Your Daily Delays Go Live: MTA Could Switch From Pre-Recorded To Real Voices

Your Daily Delays Go Live: MTA Could Switch From Pre-Recorded To Real Voices
Photo: Flickr Creative Commons

The MTA announced it will be improving…how we hear about regular delays.

At a board meeting on June 19, MTA officials discussed a plan to replace many pre-recorded messages straphangers hear on the trains with live announcements informing passengers about delays, according to news outlets.

This policy shift comes partly in response to the horrifying F train incident on June 5, where straphangers were stuck underground for almost an hour without any lights or air conditioning — and limited communication from train operators. Conductors repeated the canned message ‘we are delayed because of train traffic ahead’ before eventually admitting to ‘severe mechanical failures.’

“While announcements were made both on the train and in the affected stations during the incident, this messaging did not meet the needs of our customers,” said Wynton Habersham, acting vice president of the MTA subways, in response to that incident, reports DNAinfo.

The focus will shift to providing real-time, accurate delay updates from the best possible source, said Habersham. This includes shifting the job from the train conductors, who are stationed at the middle of the train, to the train operators, reports amNew York.

“We’re doing that because the train operator is at the front of the train and is really in the best position to see and describe the situation to the passengers,” Habersham said.

As of this morning, communication on the Q train has hit an all time low. Here’s what a straphanger heard at the Cortelyou Road station during her commute:

We reached out to MTA to comment on when the new change will be implemented but did not hear back in time for publication. We will update as we learn more.


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