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Angels Flight shut down by inspectors over damaged wheels

June 9, 2011 |  6:48 pm

Angels Flight

State safety inspectors Thursday ordered the historic Angels Flight downtown to stop operating immediately because of deterioration to the wheels of the funicular railway.

Inspectors for the California Public Utilities Commission discovered wheel flange damage during a routine inspection of the Los Angeles landmark. The flanges hold the cars’ wheels on the rails, the agency said in a statement.

The operators of Angels Flight were ordered to determine the cause of the problems and make repairs before the railway can be reopened.

John H. Welborne, president of Angels Flight Railway, could not be immediately reached for comment.

The historic railway, which first opened in 1901 in a different location, was shut down in 2001 after the brakes failed on one car, which crashed into the other one, killing an 83-year-old passenger and injuring seven others. It reopened in March 2010.

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-- Robert J. Lopez
Twitter: @LAJourno

Photo: A man walks down the stairs next to Angels Flight after it reopened in March 2010. Credit: Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times

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