NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Metropolitan Transit Authority President and CEO Thomas Prendergast admits a recent rash of technical failures on the Long Island Rail Road is evidence that more needs to be done to advance the transit system’s reliability record.
“The first half of this year the performance was relatively well,” Prendergast said. “But in a relatively short period of time — five or six weeks — it’s had a repetitive series of incidents.”
Over the last month, the LIRR has seen a series of shutdowns, caused by unpredictable weather and other accidents which left commuters sweaty and stranded at Penn Station and elsewhere.
Delays were reported on several lines following two separate incidents during morning rush hour on July 27, when a car fire damaged one of two tracks near Urban Avenue in Westbury, causing westbound delays on the Port Jefferson and Ronkonkoma branches.
Hours later, a pedestrian in Lynbrook jumped in front of a moving train and was rushed to the hospital.
Following the rash of incidents, commuters began posting the hashtag #WeDeserveBetter and demanding that either prices go down or performance goes up.
Prendergast said authorities are working hard to resolve the ongoing issues, WCBS 880’s Mike Xirinachs reported.
“Our mantra is ‘you’re only as good as your last snowstorm, you’re only as good as your last rush hour,'” Prendergast said.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo backed up Prendergast’s sentiment, saying:
“We are doing everything we can do address it,” Cuomo said. “Have faith.”