Madrid Metro

Video: How a child’s balloon cut off Madrid subway service for an hour

Metal surface touched overhead power cable at Sol station, triggering sparks

A child's balloon interrupts Madrid subway service.

A simple helium balloon interrupted Madrid’s subway service on Line 2 for an hour on Wednesday morning.

In security footage, the metallic-surfaced balloon – which Metro de Madrid authorities said was being carried by a child – is seen floating around Sol station, then getting stuck on the overhead power cable and touching the top of an incoming train.

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The combination created a “traction jump,” which has a similar effect to a fuse blowing. Sparks went off, burning the greased layer on the tracks and damaging cables.

As a result, service between Banco de España and Santo Domingo was suspended between 7.15am and 8.15am, during rush hour.

Metro authorities said that passengers inside Sol station were never in any danger.

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