Commuter rail

By - 5/25/15 - 8:42 am
Old Budd car in Somerville

Chris Silverio photographed the old Budd cars in the Somerville yards outside North Station. Read more.

By - 5/5/15 - 8:06 pm

that convinced the managers at Keolis that there was going to be snow in the forecast. Judging by the cluster that North Station became at the tail end of rush hour, it felt more like the bad old days of February than early May.

By - 4/30/15 - 6:25 pm

Surveillance photo via Transit Police.

Transit Police are looking for a guy they say has held up the Fresco flower stand on the Dartmouth Street side of Back Bay station twice this week.

The guy made off with cash in afternoon heists on both Monday and Wednesday. On Monday, he motioned as if he had a gun. He's also wanted for possibly menacing other people in the station.

He's described as Hispanic, about 22, 5'8" to 5"10" and thin. He has a tattoo behind one of his ears.

If he looks familiar, contact detectives at 617-222-1050 or send an anonymous tip to 873873.

By - 4/29/15 - 5:42 pm

"We have two seasons - winter and construction" doesn't just apply to highways. Got this e-mail from Keolis regarding pending track work on the Haverhill line. In summary, riders should expect delays and bustitution.

To All of Our Haverhill Line Customers
TRACK WORK NOTICE - Effective May 4th- June 26, 2015

Due to necessary rail improvements, the MBTA Commuter Rail will be providing bus service between Reading and Haverhill for midday trains, Monday through Friday beginning Monday, May 4, 2015.

The following Inbound trains will have bus service between Haverhill and Reading*:

By - 4/24/15 - 6:19 pm

A Boston lawyer says the T and Keolis owe commuter-rail riders a lot more than just a 15% discount on their Mass passes, so, of course, he's filed a lawsuit.

The suit, filed earlier this week in Middlesex Superior Court by Robert Richardson, seeks to make Raquel Rodriguez, identified as "a resident of the Commonwealth," lead plaintiff in an action seeking not just refunds for January, February and March passholders, but damages as well.

By - 4/5/15 - 1:17 pm
Fried Amtrak electrical equipment at Forest Hills

Fried Amtrak electrical equipment coated with fire-suppressing foam. Photo by Keolis.

Mother Nature just doesn't like trains, it seems. Keolis reports that yesterday's two-alarm fire in an Amtrak signaling vault at Forest Hills was caused by lightning.

And since Amtrak and commuter rail share the Northeastern Corridor, that meant problems for both rail systems - and will likely cause problems during tomorrow morning's inbound commute:

Inbound passengers on the Franklin and Providence/Stoughton lines should expect 20-30 minute delays coming into Boston tomorrow. Needham Line rider should see some delays, too.

By - 4/4/15 - 9:08 am
Fire at Forest Hills in Jamaica Plain

The Boston Fire Department reports a fire that erupted in an electrical vault by the side of the Northeast Corridor tracks in Forest Hills around 6:44 a.m. went to two alarms as firefighters poured bottle after bottle of dry chemical extinguisher on it.

The fire halted commuter rail and Amtrak service along the nation's busiest passenger rail corridor. Orange Line service, briefly halted, has now resumed.

By - 4/3/15 - 11:43 pm
Firetrucks and police cruisers outside Back Bay station

The scene outside Back Bay station. Photo by Jennifer Covey.

Firefighters responded to Back Bay station around 11 p.m. for what turned out to be a small trash fire on Track 7.

Meanwhile, Transit Police went in search of somebody spotted traipsing down the tracks around the same time.

By - 3/30/15 - 8:26 am

Keolis officials were at North Station this morning thanking commuters for their patience as the company restored all the trains it lost in the snows of February.

Probably just as well they weren't at South Station, where commuters were reporting delays and cancellations on the Providence Line:

Crazy - I'm now an hour and 15 mins behind sched. They cancelled the 6:42 and next train was late, too.

By - 3/20/15 - 2:02 pm

Just got this e-mail from Keolis

By - 3/20/15 - 7:20 am

Around 1 a.m. on the outbound side at the Prides Crossing stop, Transit Police report. Foul play is not a factor in the death of the 20-year-old man, police say.

By - 3/17/15 - 10:00 am

TransitMatters reports on an advisory the T has sent to its corporate customers.

Tim Lawrence adds:

Corporate pre-tax MBTA passes will be getting the 15% discount. It's your employer's responsibility to adjust your contribution.

By - 3/13/15 - 11:51 am
Man wanted for Back Bay men's room theft

Transit Police report they are looking for this guy for stealing a suitcase on wheels containing a Toshiba laptop from somebody who took his hands off the suitcase to take care of other matters in the men's room at the Back Bay train station.

The suspect in the theft, which happened around 7:35 a.m. on Jan. 26, is described as Hispanic, with a goatee, and 45 to 50.

If he looks familiar, contact Transit Police detectives at 617-222-1050 or text an anonymous tip to 873873.

By - 3/12/15 - 3:49 pm

CommonWealth Magazine gets ahold of a letter from the company's then chief executive to T officials asking them to stop trying to scare off his candidates for chief maintenance officer, a position that went unfilled for months last year.

The letter said part of the delay in finding a chief maintenance officer was caused by T officials pressuring Keolis to hire the person who held that job with the previous operator of the commuter rail. The letter also said Reddell felt T officials tried to scare him off by asking him if he "really knew what he was getting into" and mentioning the possibility that Keolis "was at risk of being defaulted in early 2015."

By - 3/12/15 - 3:04 pm

Keolis today released a list of trains it says will start running again on Monday as it works to restore full service by the end of the month. The new trains should bring commuter rail back to about 75% of its pre-snow schedule.

By - 3/10/15 - 12:15 pm

TD Garden officials found themselves before the Boston Licensing Board today, apologizing for being helpless in the face of a force like Garth Brooks.

More specifically, they were there to answer a police citation for "failure to disperse patrons in a safe, timely and orderly fashion" on the night of Jan. 24. Police say the area around and under the Garden - in particular, North Station - was so full of people exiting one Garth Brooks concert and people waiting to enter the next that the result was pedestrian gridlock that kept innocent commuters just trying to get home on commuter rail from getting to their trains on time.

By - 3/9/15 - 6:15 pm

Some kind of switch problem is wreaking all kinds of havoc at North Station this afternoon. Or as Sue puts it:

I got 99 problems and all of them seem to be switch issues at North Station.

By - 3/9/15 - 10:08 am

Just got this e-mail from Keolis regarding additional trains:

By - 3/6/15 - 8:24 am
Passengers in Mansfield waiting for train to replace dead train

Riders kicked off dead train to wait for mostly dead train. Photo by Joe Sullivan.

Riders on the Providence Line lost at commuter-rail roulette big time this morning. A train got to Mansfield and passed to the other side - but not before riders got to sit on it for 45 minutes waiting for a pusher train that itself gave up the ghost - although it turned out it was only mostly dead and so it slogged into Mansfield with its own full complement of exasperated riders and little space in which to cram the passengers from the completely dead train, which, as soon as it was emptied, revived just enough to head back to Providence.

By - 3/2/15 - 8:41 am

Because that allegedly improved commuter-rail service this morning still means that trains are roaring into Roslindale completely full, so they can't stop and they won't stop.

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