Is the MBTA killing its passengers?

A few days ago, I asked, is the MBTA killing itself? Now I’m wondering if it’s actually killing its passengers.

The following is cut-and-pasted from my submission to the MBTA “write to the top” program for commuter rail:

My wife boarded the Needham Train in Roslindale this morning (around 10am) with a carriage for our newborn baby. The only place you can board the train in Roslindale with a carriage is the last car which has a ramp. When the train arrived at Back Bay station (where she intended to get off), there was no way to exit the train from the back car, because the train didn’t pull far enough into the station, so there was only a wall at her exit. The carriage was too big to fit through the door to pass between cars (which I understand is discouraged while moving anyway). She pressed the emergency call button three times (and heard the emergency call announcement) but was  ignored by the conductors. She was unable to get off and thus ended up at South Station, two miles from her destination. The same problem would occur for someone in a wheelchair. This seems like a major ADA violation and a safety concern — how can you ignore the emergency call button pressed three times?

Okay, I’ve probably had enough hating on the MBTA for one month. What is wrong with these people, though?

[Tags]MBTA, Boston, ADA[/Tags]


  1. Steve Laniel Nov 19

    They’re shockingly incompetent nowadays; there’s no reason to stop hating on them until they clean up their act.

    Universal Hub had a story a while back about a child getting stuck in the T’s door. Many passengers raced to hit the emergency call button, like Rachele did. The train kept going. Ever since I read that, I’ve realized the absurdity of the “see something, say something” campaign. Why focus so much on a low-probability terrorist event to the exclusion of high-probability customer requirements? Not to mention that if they can’t get the everyday stuff right, we have no reason to think they’ll do well in the event of a real emergency.

  2. Jemima Nov 19

    Skip the emergency call button and go for the emergency brake.

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