The Long Island Rail Road is operating on or close to schedule systemwide after earlier switch trouble outside the East River Tunnels disrupted eastbound and westbound service, MTA officials said.

Several eastbound Long Island Rail Road trains had been canceled due to the switch problems that started just before 5:30 p.m. during the Wednesday commute, MTA officials said.

Penn Station was jammed with commuters, and authorities restricted access, advising riders to stagger their travel there.

"We had a switch that was locked in a position so trains could not switch to other tracks," said Meredith Daniels, spokeswoman for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority.

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The problem was fixed before 6:25 p.m., she said.

Westbound service was restored shortly before 6:45 p.m.