Mattapan Line driver was using phone to delete a Reddit post when he crashed his trolley, police say

That alone was grounds for firing him after the December rear-end crash that injured 17, the Globe reports, adding authorities were also not too thrilled to find he had a loaded gun in his backpack at the time.


Free tagging: 


One more to be fired?

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Slayman said she knew drivers were taking their phones on the trollies.

WTF? I thought that was the point of the "no cell phones" policy. Is she going to be fired too?


The rule for operators prohibits "having"

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Operators are not supposed to even "have" the phones while on duty. The phone is supposed to be in the car or at home, not on the employee.
There are posters all over the employee areas reminding them.


"Slayman said she knew

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"Slayman said she knew drivers were taking their phones on the trollies."

Where did you hear that? It's not in the Globe article.


This is one of those charges

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This is one of those charges prosecutors abuse nowadays when they "pile on" as many charges as they can in order to intimidate someone into taking a plea, like obstruction of justice, money laundering, "conspiracy to..." whatever. All the defendant has to do is speak to a single person about the crime they committed, ask them not to say something, and the prosecutor can pervert this into a "witness intimidating" or "tampering" charge.

It's kind of fascinating to watch

the interplay between the semi intelligent narcissists and the low IQ cretins that argue incessantly about whatever bullshit their sub is devoted to.

Kind of like the bike vs car people here who just can't realize they're never going to get rid of either or treat bicyclists like they matter.

You can thank the lottery

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You can thank the lottery system the MBTA uses to hire these drivers. Just remember you are putting your life in the hands of some completely random person picked by a computer next time you ride a bus or train.


Screening process?

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You cant really stop people from applying for any job, but you can always screen them afterward...


Yep, you win the lottery and they mail you some keys

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You win that lottery and that's it. No screening, no weeks of training, no written tests. No physical, no random drug tests. They mail you a uniform and some keys, and you just jump on the nearest train and start driving.


Bus to train

Isn't the policy they don't directly hire for trolly/subway conductors but instead offer the job to existing bus drivers?


And a better system is

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To get your job because either you are friendly with your state rep or you have a relative working for the T?

Is there some metric we are missing? Is there a universe of people in the City of Boston who have experience driving a PCC or a subway train that the T is ignoring?


Does there need to be?

Hire the best guy (or lady) currently in a smaller city. What does an IT company do? They don't settle for the best Bostonian, they import people from India and Poland.

It's like any other job. There's a ceiling and a floor. Somebody on this planet is the safest, most professional public transit operator, and somebody is the worst at that job.

If the best Bostonian you can get to do the job is playing grabass on their phone, packing heat like some dumbass gangster, and wrecking the trains, then clearly, the T can do much better to recruit talent from elsewhere.


Are you familiar with the pool of potential employees?

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In this particular industry? I wouldn't say it's exactly apples-to-apples with IT.

Did you also read that this driver was first hired in 2001 and has been an operator since? They made a huge mistake, no doubt, and I can't think of any reason why bringing a gun to work in a position like this would ever be acceptable or consistent with MBTA policy, and removal was proper. But it's clear this person got wayyy too comfortable in their job duties to let something happen like this, but it's not like they were hired yesterday and hadn't been providing otherwise good service in the years prior.

This is not a defense of this operator, at all. I just don't think that you can come to your conclusion as easily when you actually consider more about this.


You can thank your crappy schools

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... for the fact that you can't think critically about what you hear or understand that this system doesn't end with the lottery or why it exists.


To even get in the front door

To even get in the front door, though, there’s the lottery system.

All applicants are entered into the lottery, which happens every few years and contains over a thousand names, easily, according to Dillon. Everyone picks a rating station—your preferred station—but it can take a couple years to actually get there once you’re in the system. The Red Line, Dillon says, is by far the most popular rating station.

Once you’ve applied, hearing you number called can take years. And even then, there’s an interview, yearly, rigorous training, and written tests to maintain your certifications. In short, it’s a long road to get the chance to don an MBTA uniform. And once there, it can be a very trying profession.

this is quoted from this article

it seems to be the best explanation of the job lottery.


What do you mean "glad the T

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What do you mean "glad the T investigated" ? Investigation should be manadatory! WTF? What if it was worse? All because of a cell phone. And what's up with the gun?


Not exactly correct.

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The only accidents the NTSB are obligated to investigate are those involving any aircraft (both commercial and private) regardless of the extent or severity of the incident. This requirement was mandated by Congress in the original legislation creating the NTSB in the 1960s.

Investigating accidents that happen in other modes of transportation (highway, rail, marine, pipeline) is entirely at the discretion of the NTSB, who - like most government agencies these days - is operating with an increasingly restrictive budget.

Given that this collision resulted in no fatalities and the injuries sustained by passengers were relatively minor, and as the T's investigation has already determined the probable cause, I'd say it's unlikely the NTSB will get involved.

Thanks for correcting

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That's why I put the "as far as I know" in there because I wasn't sure. This isn't directed towards you, but my other point still stands that the following investigation would be mandatory, regardless of who would ultimately be responsible for conducting it.


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The release of this story the day after the Patriots loss and the State House sex scandal is timed to minimize the public and the media's attention away from the MBTA troubles.
* Does the MBTA ban on cell phone use apply to Police Officers on traffic posts at North Station
* Did the employee have a license to carry a firearm
* Did the trolley driver have a criminal background
*How many employees have past criminal arrests ranging from domestic assaults to drunk driving or drug dealing
* How many employees carry weapons to protect themselves from the public
* How many employees fear for their safety because they have reported sexual harassment from their supervisors and nothing was done so they feel the need to carry weapons
* How many employees carry weapons in the workplace because they are in fear for their lives because of their race or sexual orientation.
* Those injured in the crash better call Saul because they just hit the T-lottery


The article listed the litany

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The article listed the litany of things he's charged with, which included nothing involving the firearm. Therefore, at most the gun is (a) against MBTA policy so he can be fired for it, and (b) mentioned to add to the sensationalism of it all.

Nope, you didn’t read the

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Nope, you didn’t read the whole thing. It says he’ll be charged later for improper storage of a firearm through Malden District Court, so it happened within its area of responsibility

Reading fail

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On my part. It is weird that they put charges in at two different courts on a single incident.

it was two different crimes

it was two different crimes or incidents. The firearm was reported to be at the scene of the accident, but no one one actually saw it. Clearly, when the detectives went to the home of the driver, they asked to see the reported firearm and noted at that time it was improperly stored in the driver's home in Malden. The firearm must be properly registered because that is a more serious charge.

I rode the line to and from Mattapan Square yesterday.

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All I can say is that both drivers were courteous and drove safely. One was a bit stern because one passenger didn’t understand or pretended to not understand he needed to pay the fare. The same driver stopped before rolling into a station to allow an elderly woman to cross the tracks so she wouldn’t miss the trolley. The other driver was also conscientious and cheerfully announced all the stops.