NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — CBS2 got action after exposing overcrowded conditions on one Long Island Rail Road express route, and on Friday, officials were making a show of how serious they were taking the changes.
CBS2 exclusively exposed cramped conditions on the Cannonball trains on Monday night. Some trains were so packed that passengers were forced to sit on suitcases or in the aisles.
As CBS2’s Alice Gainer reported, there was a much smaller crowd Friday afternoon on the Cannonball express train that goes between Penn station and Montauk and the Hamptons.
Just before the 4:06 p.m. outbound train left, things were actually very orderly.
“There’s things on the seats that tell you to put your bag up; to allow space for people,” said Diego Blake of Manhattan.
Fliers on the seats also warned passengers against putting down luggage that blocks the doors and aisles. They also urged riders to leave oversized luggage at home.
Commuter Allie Fitzpatrick of the Bronx noted that she still had a lot of stuff with her. While her bag was not that large, others with bigger bags were asked to store them under seats.
CBS2 hopped on to see that people were abiding by that rule Friday afternoon, with just a couple of people standing near the exits.
As promised, extra staffers were on hand to combat overcrowding after CBS2 exposed the cramped conditions. Bags had been seen blocking the exits as people sat everywhere.
Four days after CBS2’s exclusive investigation, the LIRR issued a crackdown. So while the Friday afternoon went well, predictions were not as optimistic for the Sunday ride home.
“It’s a crazy time,” said commuter Josh McGuinness. “It’s the Cannonball train. No one hesitates to take it.”
The Cannonball is one of 10 Friday trains to Montauk, but it is especially popular because of its speed.