BOSTON — More speed limits will be lifted on MBTA lines in the coming days as the beleaguered agency’s general manager vows to ensure that a system-wide slowdown “will never happen again.”
Things have been slow for riders at the MBTA this past week. The MBTA briefly implemented “worldwide” speed limits to 10-25 mph last Thursday due to “inadequate” documentation of track defects. The issue came up after a visit by the Department of Public Utilities to the Red Line.
“As we move forward, and as we go through this process, we’re making sure that the information we’re collecting and the verification and validation process is accurate, which is why it takes time,” Interim MBTA GM Jeff Gonneville said at a news conference Friday. .
“Each of these very specific defects has a detailed set of measurements to take at each of these individual locations,” he continued. “That takes time. And it takes time to do that between the trains we do every day.”
Speed limits are no longer in place for the entire line except the Green Line, but there are still certain spots on the Red, Orange, Blue and Mattapan Lines where trains have to slow down.
Riders’ frustration is palpable, given the longer commute. “I was on the red line today and it felt like I could have run faster,” said Boston’s Alexis Santos.
“It’s an inconvenience for anyone taking it, but obviously safety comes first,” said Cambridge’s Dana Schuh, “but if they could speed up the process that would be great.”
Gonneville said the T is “taking a conservative approach” to solving the problem and prioritizing rider safety. He said the global delay on the Green Line is expected to be lifted on Saturday and other speed restrictions will be lifted in the coming days.
“As we continue to verify and validate track conditions, I will report back on our findings and I will take the necessary steps to ensure that this never happens again,” he said.
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