By Jeremy Ross

CHICAGO (CBS) — Metra trains heading in and out of Union Station were halted for about 90 minutes Friday morning, after Amtrak computers controlling the tracks and switches went down.

Amtrak spokesman Marc Magliari said the computer that controls signals and switches for all Amtrak and Metra trains serving Union Station crashed around 6:15 a.m.

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As a result, all Amtrak trains and all Metra trains on the Milwaukee District-North, North Central Service, BNSF, Milwaukee District-West, SouthWest Service and Heritage Corridor lines were halted until the computers could be restored. Metra said an estimated 50,000 commuters were delayed.

“The safest thing to do is to stop everything in its tracks, which is what we did,” Magliari said. “What you don’t want to do of course is operate in anything close to an unsafe fashion. So the best thing to do was to stop.”

The computer system began coming online again around 7:30 a.m., and was mostly restored by 8 a.m.

“We have taken every step to restore service as quickly as we can. We want to apologize, both to our passengers and to Metra’s passengers for delays this morning,” Magliari said.

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Magliari said normal service should resume by about 10 a.m.

“Certainly, by this afternoon’s rush, we’ll be fine,” he said.

While trains were stopped, Metra allowed many passengers to get off trains at other stations to find alternate transportation.

Transportation expert Joseph Schwieterman acknowledged the age of Amtrak’s equipment.

“The signal system we have, much of it dates back decades,” he said.

Schwieterman estimates $2 billion in federal funding could help fix the problem. He said President Trump’s administration has earmarked Union Station for possible help, but it’s unclear if that funding was included in his promise of a trillion dollar investment in American infrastructure.

Amtrak officials said it’s the first time in recent memory they have suffered a failure like this at Union Station.

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The cause of the computer outage is under investigation.