Raphael Dumas and some fellow grad students from the MIT Transit Lab spent today on the T - all of it. Starting at Park Street shortly before 10 a.m. (after bicycling over on Hubway bikes from MIT), they proceeded to get on and off every open stop on all four subway lines (and, yes, that included the Mattapan line and all the branches of the Green Line).
Some of his observations:
In Canada, we call fake wood paneling "beaver paneling". Just realized it's a curious choice for the transit interior. Orange Line
All but Orient Heights on the Blue Line and Charles/MGH now have electronic countdown clocks to let passengers know when the next train should arrive, the MBTA says.
The T adds it's improved the algorithms used to calculate arrival times, in particular at stations right at the beginning and end of lines, for "an elevated Countdown experience."
Orient Heights, currently under renovation, should get its clocks when overall renovations are done in 2014; Charles/MGH this fall.
The Green Line could get countdown clocks sometime before the end of the century.
Wood Island is the last/first stop on the Blue Line right now, thanks to a recalcitrant switch at Orient Heights. Buses, anyone?
A man wound up on the tracks at Airport station around 8:30 p.m. on Thursday. The train operator managed to stop the train before hitting him. An MBTA spokesman declined to say how the man ended up on the tracks but said he was not seriously hurt (click to see a photo from the scene, forwarded by Heath - it's not gory, but could be disturbing).
Around 1 p.m. today, Jenn Martinelli reports:
At 6:22, Miza reported:
Beware of blue line, 2 trains full dumped off at Suffolk Downs due to wire issues. No shuttles.
Blue Line service was shut around 10:15 a.m. to let Boston firefighters remove a woman from under a train. A T spokesman said the woman was alive when extricated, adds, "She did not fall. She was not pushed."
UPDATE, 4:30 p.m. The T reports regular service has resumed.
The T is warning Blue Line passengers to expect "significant delays" this afternoon following a train slipping off the rails at Orient Heights.
MBTA spokesman Joe Pesaturo reports the train was moving from the Orient Heights train yard onto the main tracks around 2:40 p.m., so it wasn't carrying any passengers. The T has swapped in buses for trains between Suffolk Downs and Airport.
Yesterday, the MBTA warned the tax increases proposed by the legislature were so small it could jeopardize $500 million or in anticipated federal aid for the Green Line extension. This morning, as A.P. Blake noted at 8:55 a.m.:
In the past two hours, every rapid transit line in Boston has suffered some delay due to mechanical/signal failure.
A doctor from Dubai who got on a Blue Line train at Wonderland shortly before 5 p.m. yesterday with his family says whoever took the black bag he left on a bench can keep the $3,500 in cash and the international airline tickets that were in it - he just wants their passports back.
The bag contained the passports for Dr. Zeeshan Khan, his wife Yasmin, son Raiyan and daughter Sayeema.
The MBTA says an inspector managed to board the train and asked if anybody had seen the bag or who took it. One person said "he believes a male took the bag and got off at Beachmont station," according to a Transit Police report.
MBTA Transit Police have released photos of two guys they say approached somebody at the Bremen Street entrance to the Airport T stop on Dec. 22 and "offered to sell him a .40 caliber and/or a .380 caliber firearm."
What do you make of this, Johnny? Trains on the Orange, Green and Blue lines slowed due to a power problem the T has yet to identify. Officials report power had come back at several locations by 1:45 p.m., however. The Blue Line was reported back up and running about five minutes after that.
The MBTA forwards this photo from the Blue Line repair facility in Orient Heights, where workers have made a Christmas tree out of a "bolster rack" of trucks used to hold the axles of Blue Line cars.
The Globe reports on the planned September, 2013 shutdown, which will include making the station ADA compliant and replacing the current bomb shelter of an entrance with something glassier.
Meanwhile, on Dec. 18, the Parks and Recreation Department holds a formal tree hearing on the T's request to chop down 21 trees along Cambridge Street to make way for the renovation project - 13 linden trees and 8 crabapple trees. The hearing starts at 10 a.m. in the department's 1010 Mass. Ave. offices.
MBTA Transit Police report arresting two guys who didn't take kindly to news early this morning that a T worker wouldn't personally drive them back home and that a cab driver wouldn't take them to Blue Hill Avenue for a flat $20.
Ivan Hernandez, 22, of Dorchester, and Jevaun Jacques, 21, of Mattapan, face a variety of charges for a melee outside Wonderland station around 1:30 a.m. that police say started when they went up to a T employee, said they were T workers themselves and that he should drive them post haste to Blue Hill Avenue. When he refused, police say, they kicked his car. Then, police say: