Michael Doyle is among the scores (hundreds? thousands?) of Fitchburg Line riders forced to deboard prematurely at Porter Square this evening due to either some sort of switch problem between there and Belmont or a train that gave up the ghost, depending on which MBTA alert one chooses to read.
Regardless of the reason, "no outbound train has left Porter in 90 minutes," Saul Blumenthal reports.
The Orange Line suffered delays due to signal problems at Oak Grove, while the Red Line slowed to a crawl because of a dead train at Davis earlier this morning.
Meanwhile, over on commuter rail, a dead train is causing problems on the Fitchburg Line, which is not one of those coastal routes where that was supposed to happen.
Hood Will Hunting was impressed by the way this guy had his commuter-rail pass ready for conductor inspection in the brim of his hat:
This playa right here has me wanting to trade my snapbacks in and upgrade my hat collection.
Transit Police report a man on the Fitchburg Line tracks near Nashoba Road was killed around 10:30 p.m. by a train. Foul play is not suspected, police say.
Transit Police report a man on the inbound Fitchburg Line tracks near Park Street was hit and killed by a train around 12:20 p.m.
Miles on the MBTA, who usually tries to find the good in even the dowdiest T stop, finds absolutely nothing worthwhile about pitiful Hastings, a tiny little stop on the Fitchburg Line in Weston, right down to the Sharpie-drawn station sign on a plank of wood:
They...they even drew a little sign around "Hastings" and gave the MBTA website and everything! So...this is the signage. THIS IS THE ONLY INDICATION THAT PEOPLE ARE WAITING AT THE HASTINGS COMMUTER RAIL STATION ON THE FITCHBURG LINE IN WESTON, MASSACHURSETSTES! HASTINGS? MORE LIKE HATE-STINGS, BECAUSE THIS STATION IS THE WORST!
Transit Police report a male bicyclist, 25-30, rode around a crossing gate in the down position at Park Street in Somerville around 1:30 p.m. and was promptly struck and killed by an outbound Fitchburg Line train.
Finn alerted us to an update from the T earlier this morning:
Fitchburg Update: Train 1400 is operating 70-100 min late between South Acton & North Station at reduced speed due to a mechanical problem.
Back in the old days, railroads used to use semaphores to signal train engineers whether they could go forward and how fast. You can still see one of these semaphores where the old Boston & Maine (now MBTA, natch) line to Fitchburg crosses Elm Street in downtown Waltham - mounted on a switching tower that sits next to a switch for what used to be a line to Watertown.
The signals were, of course, not very useful at night, so there were also bulbs to signal engineers: Read more.
Riders aren't supposed to ride in the spaces between cars on commuter rail, but, eh, whadaya gonna do, right, Fitchburg Line riders? Finn, who was among those lucky riders around 7 a.m., reports a conductor's reassuring words:
If you're in there, make sure you hold on.
The T has posted a video of a weekend replacement of a Fitchburg Line bridge over Rte. 62 in Concord - compressed to just four minutes.
Around 6:15 near the Park Street crossing, R.S.Y. Buchanan reports. He adds the driver of the car got out before the crash.
Even normally pessimistic Fitchburg Line commuters probably didn't expect this: By 7 p.m., the 5:30 train to Fitchburg train hadn't moved more than a few feet from North Station. As Billy Lazarro explains, passengers finally walked down the track to another train, which also then just sat there.
The dreaded slippery rail struck again this morning.
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