Tuesday, February 3, 2009

"Out of Service"

Gotta love it when a train goes out of service at the peak of rush hour. An absolutely packed train 5162 leaving Rosslyn at 6:02 p.m. made about 15 very jerky attempts to leave when the dreaded “this train is out of service” announcement was made. It sat there empty for another 5 minutes before finally pulling away.

Many people were upset, and you could hear them relating stories of other times that had happened to them or just generally bitching about Metro.

We had to wait for about four trains before finally shoehorning ourselves into another Orange Line train bound for Vienna.

If you’re interested in how Metro operates, hang out for a few on the platforms near the front of the trains, and you’ll see what an amateur, anachronistic operation it really is. For one, no train stops even close to the same place, which is strange because in Japan, the location of where each door on the entire train will stop is marked on the platform--and that's where they stop. Yes, you read that right.

Anyway, with our own clunky system, the doors seem to be the main focus of what goes wrong, but you’d think that would have been solved long, long ago.

Mass transit didn’t win any fans on that train, but my main question is how does a train that’s “out of service” then pull away normally? I’m not saying Metro is pulling a fast one (har har), but perhaps Cal could explain.


Anonymous said...

It is quite amazing to watch the drivers MANUALLY check the doors at every station. Those doors must've been bought at Wal Mart.

Anonymous said...

Alarming frequency. FAIL!

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