This frame capture from video released by WABC-TV in New York shows fire and smoke beneath the 138th Street lift bridge on the Harlem River on Monday.
NBC News and news services
updated 9/20/2010 7:22:03 PM ET 2010-09-20T23:22:03

A large fire under a bridge sent billowing smoke over New York and shut down commuter rail service between Manhattan and the northern suburbs for over two hours on Monday.

No injuries were reported.

Television images showed pilings burning in the Harlem River under the 138th Street lift bridge and FDNY marine units hitting the fire with water. Huge orange flames were visible, and plumes of white and black smoke wafted over the river and East Harlem.

The fire began shortly before noon and was declared under control around 1:30 p.m.

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Metro-North resumed service around 2:30 p.m., with scattered delays of up to 15 minutes. It said two of the four tracks on the bridge had been restored. The railroad was assessing damage on the remaining tracks and its impact, if any, on the evening rush-hour.

Riders were instructed to use subway connections during the Metro-North shutdown.

The NYC Office of Emergency Management reports that the cause of the fire was an electrical transformer, NBC News reported.

Suburban commuters have had a tough go of it recently. The Long Island Rail Road suffered a week of service disruptions following an Aug. 23 fire in Jamaica, Queens, that damaged a switching system. On Thursday evening, a storm left downed trees on the tracks, causing LIRR suspensions.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Video: Fire under NY bridge stops commuter trains

  1. Transcript of: Fire under NY bridge stops commuter trains

    BRIAN WILLIAMS, anchor: Big, smoky fire here in New York today as wooden pilings were set ablaze just beneath an important railroad bridge. It snarled commuter rail traffic for hours while it was checked out and declared safe eventually for train traffic.


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