NYC Subway Riders Given Bloody Metrocards
Union says MTA is taking wrong approach to deaths
By Matt Cantor, Newser User
Posted Feb 8, 2013 7:52 AM CST
A screen grab from CBS video.   (CBS New York)

(Newser) – The Transport Workers Union in New York City isn't happy with MTA measures to boost safety on the tracks—and it's making its point rather graphically. Union members are distributing "Grim Reaper" MetroCards that appear to be covered in blood, CBS New York reports. After 55 people were killed by trains last year, "we as a union—my officers and I—felt we had to intervene," said a worker.

To make things safer, the MTA has pasted safety-minded posters and is looking into solutions like erecting barriers along the platforms. The union says that's not the way to deal with the issue. Instead, it suggests calling on drivers to go slower when approaching a station, readying emergency shut-off switches, and placing agents on busy platforms—and has printed those suggestions on the back of the bloodied cards. The MTA disagrees: "Slowing down trains would create crowding conditions on trains and platforms and would actually create a more dangerous condition."

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Showing 3 of 9 comments
Feb 8, 2013 9:51 PM CST
Personally, I don't mind the morbid reminders to be wary around the tracks. Granted, if you need to be reminded... Better solution - Instead of having all that open space between the platform and the tracks, put a fence / gate / etc. up and have automated sliding doors that only open when the train is in the station and at a complete stop. Gates slide closed again about 15 seconds before the train leaves the station. At the very least if someone jumps on the tracks, the train is already stopped and passersby will be able to notify transportation authorities before the train starts moving again and crushes them.
Feb 8, 2013 2:39 PM CST
People jump on the tracks because they can't think of a better way to commit suicide. Give them a legal, safe, painless alterenative, like physician-assisted suicide, and maybe they'd quit screwing up the commute by flinging themselves in front of trains.
Feb 8, 2013 2:17 PM CST
Having lived in NYC for decades I can tell you that the MTA is a dysfunctional colossus run by overpaid and useless imbeciles. The Transit Workers are right on this one.