Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Switch Problems Wreak Havoc on the Worcester/Framingham Trains

Another morning, another 45+ minute delay on the Worcester line this morning. I got to the Grafton station at 7:03 and saw groups of fellow riders milling around by the pay boxes. They were all discussing the delays, it seems the p504 (departs Worcester at 6:05) was delayed over an hour and the p506 (departs Worcester at 6:30) was delayed over 45 minutes.

I looked on the MBTA website from my blackberry and it looked like the p502 had been cancelled and suggested that passengers seek alternate arrangements for transportation. The service alert attributed the delays to switch problems in Worcester.

At around 7:20 a train rolled into Grafton. As I went to get on the train, I asked the conductor if it was the p504 and he barked back at me "It's a LOCAL!" Um, thanks for the great customer service!

After Framingham, one of the conductors announced that our train was actually the p506, which is supposed to get to Boston at 8:11 AM. It was a local, making every stop all the way into the city, and we finally arrived at South Station at about 8:55.

One of my co-workers asked me if i thought the new MDOT agency taking over has anything to do with these delays. I can't imagine why that would be the case, but really, out of 5 commutes this week, 3 of them have been delayed by more than 1/2 hour. It's not even winter yet! I shudder to think what will happen if this is just the beginning.


AJ said...

What an odd morning. When I showed up for the 7:49 train, the ticker was letting us know that the P504 was cancelled and all the trains ahead of ours were 30-45 minutes late. I don't really get why they would tell us about every train except ours. It ended up only being 10 minutes late.

In the meantime, I think they may have cancelled the P508 as well. I called a friend who usually rides that train, and he said the same as your post. The train showed up about 15 minutes late, but it was the P506. Even though it's possible, I doubt they sent another train through in between your 720 departure and when I arrived at 740. The train that showed up for us was definitely the P512, and announced as such once we had boarded.

Train Rider said...

The best part of this morning ... they never even collected passes or tickets on the p506!

Anonymous said...

From what I understand, there was a paperwork problem with a locomotive on an earlier train. There has been equipment problems with locomotives, and the rails have been unusually slippery (leaves and frost I would imagine), which occurs a lot this time of year...

AJ said...

They haven't collected them on the p512 3 out of 4 days this week.