Saturday, October 8, 2011

Hell on Rails

"Few things say 'urban mass misery' more vividly than a breakdown on the Long Island Rail Road, the nation’s oldest, largest and, lately, most trouble-prone commuter railroad." (Hall, 1) Last Thursday, at the height of rush hour, lightning fried the signal system at the Jamaica Station in Queens, delaying service out of Penn Station. Hours later, the signal failure shut down all trains going east of Jamaica Station. This is not the first time this has happened. In August 2010, almost the exact same situation occurred. The real question is, why is the brand new $56 million dollar signal system failing? The only explanation the Long Island Rail Road has now is the failure of communication. They left thousands of people stranded on trains and platforms for hours last week, and many believe this is not the last time it will happen. 

The author of the article, Trish Hall, is very persuasive. She strongly believes that the Long Island Rail Road does not have an explanation for all their issues. She lists all the imperfections of the rail road system, like the quiet intercoms, and TV-monitors with the wrong information. Hall also points out that the state government has ignored the ancient infrastructure of the rail road for years. Hall encourages Long Islanders to urge lawmakers to spend what it takes to keep the Long Island Rail Road up and running. She says, "Being cheap about transit always ends up being expensive, especially when lightning strikes."

Click here to view the article - Hell on Rails

1 comment:

  1. I can't imagine being trapped for several hours, that would probably be the most boring thing ever.