Aug. 21, 2020 By Christian Murray
The MTA may be forced to reduce service on the 7 train if vandals continue to smash windows, according to reports.
On Wednesday, 39 windows were discovered smashed on a 7 train at the Vernon Blvd.–Jackson Avenue station in Long Island City.
A crew of MTA workers also found on Wednesday a cracked window on a conductor’s cab on a 7 train at the Flushing terminal.
The agency is reportedly running out of spare windows to replace them all and the manufacturer can’t keep pace with demand. Furthermore, a train has to be pulled out of service in order for new windows to be installed.
Another 7 train got violated today @NYCTSubway @NYPDTransit this is getting out of control @ClaytonGuse @progressiveact @dahvnyc @danrivoli I wonder if it’s the same guy they caught and let go 🤷🏾♂️ pic.twitter.com/Ki0clZTOlH
— Gomez (@TripleG_RTO) August 20, 2020
The agency told the Daily News that the MTA may have to reduce service on the 7 line.
Videos have been circulating of the vandalism, with a rider posting footage of the smashed windows at the Vernon Blvd-Jackson Avenue station this week.
Another video was posted on social media in July when a similar incident took place.
The MTA has had to contend with smashed windows across the system for months.
The MTA released a photo earlier this month of a man who has allegedly smashed 200 windows–primarily on the 2, 3, and 7 lines– across 63 trains since March.
There have been no arrests.
In all my years as a #TrainOperator I have never seen this many broken windows on 1 train @danrivoli @ClaytonGuse @JMartinezNYC pic.twitter.com/SGgat5DVQ4
— Gomez (@TripleG_RTO) July 31, 2020
Less service instead of more service? You must be joking! Communications Based Train Control has been up and running since January 2019 (which was supposed to have been completed by October 2016), there are still signal problems and service disruptions on the #7 Flushing subway line. Now we have vandalism to contend with. Perhaps it is time to return to the good old days when a transit police officer was assigned to ride each train. This, along with installation of security cameras on trains and stations might help to reduce both vandalism and crime.
How many more years must we wait for MTA NYC Transit resume mid-day express service between 10 AM and 3 PM?. This last ran in the mid 1980’s. You have to question if it was worth investing $600 million in CBTC when it only resulted in increasing the number of rush hour trains by 2 from 27 to 29 in each direction. MTA NYC Transit no longer has any other opportunity for increasing rush hour capacity on the #7 line.
Given the tremendous growth in #7 ridership 24/7, riders would welcome restoration of mid day service, Saturday and holiday express services (which briefly ran in the early 1950’s) along with more frequent local service off peak, late evenings, overnight and weekends.
There are opportunities to increase capacity and service. There is always equipment used primarily for rush hour peak service that is available to provide additional service during off peak hours. It is a question of finding millions of dollars more to cover operating costs for additional service. Why not use future Manhattan congestion toll pricing revenues to pay for this?
(Larry Penner is a transportation advocate, historian and writer who previously worked for the Federal Transit Administration Region 2 NY Office. This included the development, review, approval and oversight for grants supporting billions in capital projects and programs on behalf of the MTA, NYC Transit bus and subway, Long Island and Metro North Rail Roads, MTA Bus and NYC Department of Transportation along with 30 other transit agencies in NY & NJ)