Red Line halted due to trash fire, situation for riders kind of dire

Smoke at South Station

Smoky South Station. Photo by Doug Wilder.

UPDATE, 10:20 p.m. Red Line service was supposedly back to normal.

A touch of a trash fire on the Red Line tracks tonight. Quickly brought under control, but you know how that causes cascading delays up and down the line. Boston firefighters returned control of the tracks to the T around 8:50 p.m., but that brought no relief to riders because the train that may have caused the problem was stuck at Downtown Crossing. Instead, the T began corralling buses to shuttle riders between Park Street and JFK in both directions.

Wilder walked to Park Street and found the teeming riders milling about, waiting for a shuttle bus:

Waiting for a bus at Park Street

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The Red Line has been a mess

By on

On weekends for awhile. When they close one of the branches to do the "Winter Resiliency" work, they are only running one branch worth of trains.

So instead of alternating Braintree and Ashmont trains every 7 minutes in the central subway, you have one every 14 minutes. It was a 20-minute wait for an Alewife train on a packed platform at South Station at 5pm on Saturday.

Unacceptable.

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I don't get it either

I understand the work they are doing - but what GoSox described happens any time branch work goes on - the central subway effectively runs at half capacity. No clue why they can't shift more cars into the running branch and at least attempt to run normal service...

sigh

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Sunday service

By on

I boarded an "Ashmont" train yesterday (Sunday) morning at about 7:40 a.m. The countdown timer said the next train was 20+ minutes away. I hope it was lying, for other passengers' sake.

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I was on the train last night

By on

I was on the train last night, going from W Broadway to DTX. The fire in S. Station haulted the train. At first, we sat with the doors open. They kept closing and popping open. Everyone assumed someone was in the door. Then some MBTA workers walked up and down the platform with a flashlight and the guy on the announcements said the train was "not accepting passengers," but had to make that announcement several times for people to understand they were supposed to get off the train if they were already on it. Then, everyone stood on the platform with no information. I gave up and went up the escalator to walk or find a cab. Smelled a faint smell of smoke, but thought someone had perhaps smoked a cigarette, which leads me to think the fire was on the outbound side of the tracks. As I walked through downtown, I saw 4 fire trucks heading toward the station, and I truly hoped that the fire I smelled wasn't getting worse and all those people were still standing around on the platform with NO INFORMATION at all at 8pm on Sunday. So not so many people that a bus couldn't get them quickly to where they were going, but plenty of folks who were in danger of smoke inhalation if a situation were getting worse.

MBTA truly is the suckiest transportation organization in the world.

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Honestly, they are paying for

By on

Honestly, they are paying for all that station staff -- why not instruct them to communicate better with the passengers!

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