QUEENS, N.Y. (CBS 2) — For many New Yorkers, getting stuck on a subway train for more than a couple of extra minutes can be a serious annoyance – and the thought of being stuck for hours is a nightmare.
But in the midst of this blizzard, it became a reality for some folks trying to get home from Kennedy Airport.
Stranded passenger Susan Jutt joined CBS 2 via cell phone from a crowded A train Monday morning just after 5:30 a.m. At that point, she and approximately 400 other riders had been stuck on the train for just over five hours.
“Most of the people are just waking up now, and there’s no water and no bathrooms so it’s a little difficult,” Jutt said.
The immobile train was sitting above ground at the Aqueduct Racetrack station, and according to Jutt, just about everyone on the train was coming from Kennedy Airport after their flights were canceled.
“There was no other way to get out of the airport, the air train closed down, so there were shuttle buses that took us to the subway,” Jutt said.
NYC Transit Spokesman Charles Seaton said snow drifts and ice on the third rail had stalled the trains at the Broad Channel and Aqueduct stops in Queens, north and south of Kennedy Airport.
Workers had been intermittently dispensing information to the passengers. At one point, the plan was to have another train come to pull the defunct A train out of the station.
“That never happened,” Jutt said. “I have seen workers, I know they’ve been trying.”
Most passengers remained in good spirits despite the frustrating situation.
“I think everybody’s been pretty good natured considering how difficult this has been,” said Jutt.
By noon the trains had been pulled into stations. Seaton says there are no trains stuck anywhere.
“It’s really still a mess out there on the subways and buses,” Seaton said. “Let us clean up the rest of the system, get the trains moving, if you do not have to use mass transit today, if you don’t have to go anywhere — don’t.”