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Suspicious Package Closes Red Line Subway

Trains Now Back To Normal
Red Line: Suspicious Package

The Red Line was rerouted Friday morning due to a suspicious package that turned out to be garbage. (Credit: CBS)

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UPDATED 11/26/10 10:03 a.m.

CHICAGO (CBS) - CTA Red Line trains were rerouted out of the subway for a period of time Friday morning, after a suspicious package was reportedly found tied to the tracks. Service is now back to normal.

But the package turned out to be garbage.

The package was found in the Grand Avenue station. Police arrived at the scene just after 9 a.m. after the item was spotted on the tracks.

As police investigated, Red Line trains operated on the Loop elevated tracks between Fullerton Avenue and Cermak Road. By 10 a.m., service had returned to normal.

But the package was determined to be an empty black bag with a rolling pin, reports indicated. Police News Affairs officers described the package as “garbage” to CBS 2′s Mike Parker. The scene was cleared by 9:32 a.m.

The problem came in the middle of the Black Friday shopping blitz, which draws throngs of customers to stores near the Red Line on State Street and Michigan Avenue.

Meanwhile, the CTA Blue Line was also shut down on the Far Northwest Side for a separate issue.

Trains were not getting power from the third rail near the Harlem station and crews were initially forced to operate trains on a single track on the outbound tracks between Cumberland and Harlem-O’Hare, CTA spokeswoman Wanda Taylor said.

By about 9:15 a.m., the single-track route was shortened to operate between Cumberland to Harlem and California to Belmont, Taylor said.

Bus shuttles are running between Jefferson Park and Rosemont, she said.

The No. 56 Milwaukee buses are being recommended as an alternate service.

The Sun-Times Media Wire contributed to this report.