BOSTON — MBTA passengers were forced to climb out windows to escape after a Red Line train derailed at Broadway station. The incident caused major delays for T passengers.
“I’m late and that could cause me to lose my position,” said Shawn Bolden, who was not on the derailed car but caught up in some major delays afterward.
Moments after the Red Line train derailed, photos and videos surfaced. One video showed the damaged Red Line train and some of the passengers exiting through a window. A photo showed broken windows and severe damage to the train.
Then we started hearing the stories about the other impact: people’s commutes.
“I have a surgery that I’m on my way to,” one rider told us.
Boston 25 heard endless stories of people trying to stay on schedule after getting caught up in the Red Line derailment.
“Slightly in limbo. I’m just ordering an Uber, should be fine. Just trying to take the Red Line to get to MGH,” the rider said.
The MBTA said the Red Line train was going southbound moving at a slow rate of speed when the second car derailed at the Broadway station. The train hit the end of the Broadway platform. All 47 passengers got out safely.
Many passengers we talked to raised the other recent incidents including other derailments and this past weekend’s escalator malfunction that hurt multiple people.
“I feel like we have been seeing a lot of issues kinda coming up with the T recently. Hopefully we can figure out what is going on [and] causing all these issues,” another rider said.
Boston 25 did see multiple shuttles going into service to help transport people between all the Red Line stations between JFK and Park Street. The MBTA has been updating the shuttle service via social media alerts. Braintree riders can use the Commuter Rail, and the T said Charlie Cards will work.
An MBTA Spokesperson told Boston B25: “The MBTA’s top priority is ensuring the safety and reliability of the system.”
A transportation advocate said passengers should feel safe. But reliability is dependent on funding, said Jarred Johnson, executive director of TransitMatters, a public transit advocacy group based in Boston.
“So I do think the T is still safe but what it does point to is a real need for revenue, and this is something that the legislature and the governor really have to take up and have to take seriously,” said Johnson, who points the finger of blame to Beacon Hill.
The T is pouring millions into infrastructure, a record $1.92 billion in 20-21. Johnson said one more thing could help and should already be in place after the Fiscal and Management Control Board dissolved on June 30.
“We’ve been three months without a board that’s just focused on the T. So that’s three months that the governor has had time to appoint folks and hasn’t yet,” Jackson said.
We reached out to Gov. Baker’s office about that. They replied saying that so far two members have been appointed to that new advisory board, including MassDOT Secretary Jamey Tesler and Quincy Mayor Thomas Koch. In the interim. MassDot is providing oversight to the T.
The governor’s office also added that, so far, the $1.9 billion was spent on infrastructure this year and more than $2 billion is slated for improvements to the MBTA next year. By comparison, the MBTA’s capital investment spending was only $600 million in 2014.
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