Dead trains on the Red, Green, Needham and Providence/Stoughton lines (so far) made for another interesting commute for many this morning.
UPDATE: "Significant delays" possible on the Fitchburg Line due to signal problems.
Commuter-rail lines that share the Northeast Corridor with Amtrak (Providence, Franklin and Needham) are reporting delays thanks to an overhead Amtrak wire that came down somewhere between Forest Hills and downtown.
It's heartwarming how the little choo-choos help each other out. When the 6:33 into Boston belched its last and died in Sharon, the train behind it agreed to help out and push it all the way into Boston. Good train, good! Of course, that does mean 30-minute delays, but at least Providence Line riders get to have a nice warm feeling, unlike their counterparts on the Newburyport/Rockport line, facing lengthy delays due to boring signal problems, and riders on the Fitchburg Line, facing long delays because, well, it's the Fitchburg Line.
Amelia Sutton recounts a recent four-hour train ride on commuter rail from Providence to Boston. For those unfamiliar with that route, no, it's not supposed to take four hours:
Perhaps I should have seen a blacked-out train with no AC or electricity to be a bad omen when boarding in Providence. But no. The conductors assured us that the engine was functional thanks to "reserve batteries." We would be fine!
Downed power lines somewhere in the Canton area mean no Amtrak service between Boston and New York and, of course, massive delays on the Providence/Stoughton Line that have left stranded commuters hoping for the buses the T is promising.
This time by an outbound commuter-rail train on the Providence Line, about 5:20 p.m. just outbound from the commuter-rail station, AlertNewEngland reports.
Channel 4 reports the woman, whom the MBTA said was trespassing on the tracks, was hit next to the Boston Renaissance Charter School. The school sent out e-mail to parents and staff that the woman had no affiliation with the school and did not get onto the tracks from school property.
Trains in both directions were stopped, and extensive delays persist as of 7:30 p.m. As passengers sat and grew restive, one Providence Line conductor went on the PA, Lauren Gallagher tweets:
The conductor simply announced "I apologize for you losing 2 hours of your life, but this girl lost all of hers."
In August, Benjy Barlatier, 28, of Hyde Park, was killed by an inbound Amtrak train while standing on the tracks at the station.
MBTA Transit Police report finding somebody with an apparent gunshot wound this afternoon. Two outbound Providence/Stoughton trains from South Station were delayed; service is back to normal otherwise.
Mary McVeigh took this photo around 4:50 p.m. from her seat on the 811 train to Providence. The train that stopped all of a sudden when the engine died 30 minutes earlier. The train with no lights or heat. But, she adds:
At least we can watch the snow fall.
Broken trains on the Red Line and Providence Line, signal problems on the Blue Line, a broken rail on the Needham Line (a broken rail? What'd they do? Taunt it mercilessly until it collapsed in a sobbing heap on the ground?), speed restrictions on the Kingston/Plymouth Line. Amazingly, no delays reported on the Green Line.
The Providence Line inbound is all messed up this morning due to a disabled train at Ruggles.
Benjamin Morton is onboard the 7:35 a.m. train from Providence, which as I type is at least 30 minutes late. He tweets:
"we got another couple things to try, but no progress yet, hopefully we get it moving soon" - 32min late
Over at CommonWealth, Jack Sullivan reports the ties that keep MBTA commuter-rail trains on the tracks south of Boston are falling apart:
... The concrete ties were supposed to last 50 years, but many are falling apart after less than 10. ... MBTA officials say they have identified defects in about 4,000 concrete ties on the two Old Colony commuter rail lines to Boston and on the Providence-to-Boston line, but they admit the problem could affect as many as 150,000 ties, equal to more than 56 miles of track. The cost of repairing the ties is unclear, but projections using numbers from similar projects elsewhere yield an estimate that could run as high as $100 million. ...
Looks like somebody with a grudge changed the name of the wireless access point on one train out of Providence.
I've taken the commuter rail from Providence to Back Bay several times in the past few weeks for internship interviews, and one thing constant with my trips are that the commuter rail workers, especially female, are super angry and pissed off at everything! ...
Imagine: Dude was taking photos out the window of a Providence Line train:
... Shortly after taking a few pictures, a conductor came along and told me I wasn't permitted to take photos on the train. 'Why not?' I asked politely, turning off my camera and putting it away. The answer was along the lines of 'Because.' ...
As I read through the accounts and talk with co-commuters, I am struck by what seems to be a stark contrast in the efficiency and effectiveness of the responses to the accident in Canton yesterday. From all accounts, local first responders recognized the scale of the accident and the high number of casualties, and responded accordingly with triage and, eventually, treatment and transportation to the hospital for those who needed it.
... We came to a dead stop (again, not surprising), and I waited to get going, knowing we weren't too far out of Canton Junction. What happened next was certainly the most surprising and startling moment of my life, as there was no advanced warning of any kind - suddenly I found, in one swift yet disjointed motion, my head thrown against the glass pane of the door, and my entire body lurching in the opposite direction - and not just away, backwards, but down.
The lights were out, my hat was thrown clear, and my IPod wasn't playing; in fact, my headphones weren't in at all. ...
Sitting on the 5:40 at South Station, they just announced that there was a collision at Canton Junction between a commuter rail train and a freight train. They're holding us at South Station until further notice.
BNSFGP38 posts from the scene:
Figures. Those disintegrating, cracked Northeast Corridor ties will affect some MBTA commuters out of South Station. The Globe reports the rail lines between Back Bay and Readville will be shut June 14 through 17 to allow for replacement of the ties there. That means buses for commuters on the Attleboro/Providence, Franklin, Needham and Stoughton lines (dear Globe: What about the Fairmount Line?).
Signs warning pedestrians away from the in-bound entrance to the commuter rail station along Waterfield Road in Winchester are still in place, more than two weeks after hundreds of pounds of concrete fell from the ceiling. ...
Thanks to a downed electric line somewhere around Ruggles and Back Bay, commuter rail is all bolloxed up this morning. Coming in from Providence, they sent us onto the "Dorchester Line" (I didn't even know there was one!), which took us around those two stations, much to the consternation of those who planned to get off there.
Even without stops, we're still 15+ minutes late to South Station. I wonder how long it'll take to fix this mess!
I've had two colleagues report the availability of WiFi on MBTA Commuter Rail trains this week, one on the Greenbush line, one on the Providence line. It seems legitimate enough, has a splash screen & requires one to agree to terms & conditions.
Has anyone else seen this? It's definitely not station-based.
The technology seems to be based on Parvus RiderNet.