NYC Train Operators Told by Union to Slow Down; MTA Disapproves

By Ida Siegal
|  Tuesday, Jan 15, 2013  |  Updated 11:06 AM EDT
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Subway train operators are being told to slow down trains, but the MTA says it's counterproductive to safety. Ida Siegal reports.

NBC 4 New York

Subway train operators are being told to slow down trains, but the MTA says it's counterproductive to safety. Ida Siegal reports.

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Subway trains are entering stations more slowly after the transit workers union put out advisory signs instructing drivers to take greater caution, but the MTA says the move throws off subway schedules and is counterproductive to straphanger safety.

The union says having trains enter stations more slowly helps train operators stop if someone suddenly jumps or gets pushed onto the tracks. 

According to the union, the normal speed for trains to enter the station is 30 or 40 mph. But after the union released advisories over the weekend, trains are entering stations closer to 10 mph. 

The safety initiative comes after two people were pushed onto the tracks and killed by trains.

"They should come in slowly, at least tap on the brakes and ease their way in," said one straphanger. "Coming into the station, it's safety first." 

But the MTA doesn't approve of the slowdown, saying it throws off the train schedules, and that there are other ways to make the system safer. 

"Some of the actions they are recommending, if implemented, could result in even more hazardous conditions due to overcrowding on platforms and on board trains," an MTA spokesman said in a statement.

When it comes to affecting their own schedules, straphangers seem reluctant to support the union's initiative.

"I think they should get me to work on time. So if you slow down and I'm late, I've got a problem with that," said another subway rider. 

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