Friday, August 8, 2008

Lucky 08-08-08 Morning Commute

Those storms were terrible last night, huh? I lost my power around 11:40 p.m. and it didn't come back on until 2:00 a.m. Crazy!

This morning's commute was good. The P508 train arrived in Grafton at 7:09 a.m. and we got to South Station at 8:22 a.m. It wasn't that crowded today, either. I'm sure a lot of people took the day off, as there are really only four more summer Friday's before Labor Day. Boy, does the summer zip by.

Let the games begin . . . the Olympic Games that is!

From today's The Boston Globe, an interesting article about commuter delays on the Haverhill commuter rail line. Due to unexplained power surges that short out signals, at least 100 trains have been delayed on this line since January. National Grid runs power lines along the tracks. The electrical disturbances do not cause a safety issue but they can disrupt travel.

The MBCR sent National Grid a letter in July complaining that the power company is not doing enough to fix what is described as an "emergency situation." This issue has caused 1 in 4 trains on the Haverhill line to be at least five minutes late in both June and July. At least 10% of all the Haverhill trains have been late since February 2008.
"It's just frustrating," said Jeralyn Levasseur of Haverhill, an administrative assistant at Massachusetts General Hospital, "that every day, if you have something you need to be to at a certain time, that you're not guaranteed to get there."

Levasseur is annoyed with many aspects of the service and safety on the trains, though she praises conductors for acting professionally despite the turmoil.

MBTA GM Dan Grabausaks was quoted as saying this situation is "unacceptable."

My question - if this issue has been going on since January, why hasn't the T or the MBCR tried to communicate the seriousness of the issue to the media, to put pressure on National Grid to resolve the situation?

Supposedly the issue will be fixed soon.

In other news, the T has introduced some "green" buses into the bus line. Yesterday 155 low emission buses were launched into the bus fleet. Seventy of the buses will serve the North Shore, 65 will serve the South Shore and 20 will run routes around greater Boston.


Kidney Stones said...

You missed a heck of a commute from Grafton to Worcester on last night's P523 train.

We got to Grafton at the normal time (around 6:03 I think). We did not pull into Worcester until 6:47. Yes, you read that correctly. Took about 40 minutes from Grafton to Worcester. No announcement at all. We creeped along at MAYBE 5 MPH all the way to Union Station.

I only found out after the fact that it was due to "slippery tracks." However, when we pulled into Grafton, it felt like we hit a small school bus! I wonder if something broke.

Anyway, I was angry for two reasons: 1) Being immensely late, and 2) The fact that I was 3 minutes away from being able to claim my $15.50.

Anonymous said...

If you are wondering why the T doesn't leak information to the press about a conflict they are having it's because that's not how businesses conduct business. Leaking something to the press is not a good way creating goodwill that is necessary to getting things done in the business environment. Leaking this sort of information is only used as a last resort, which you are probably seeing now.