Poor electronic signs, you never had a chance


Yay!  The electronic message boardsalong the L line are up and running.  Uhhh…wait…no, maybe they aren’t.  Are they broken already?

In some cases yes, and not just with quirky little bugs.  It turns out that people are actually stealing the copper wiring that the signs are hooked up to!  The copper cabling is very valuable, and can be sold easily as scrap metal. 

The rising price of copper among scrap dealers is thought to be the cause of many copper capers around the city.

Transit officials say the thefts are partly to blame for delays in completing its ballyhooed Public Address/Customer Information Screen project.

Alright, let’s not get too carried away.  We can agree that it is a pretty significant set back, but don’t put too much of the delay-blame on the copper thieves.  There’s been a significant number of non-wire related problems too. 

On a side note, how much faith should we have in subway security?  If people can walk in, cut out copper cables, and walk away without anyone noticing, that seems to be a problem!  These aren’t little cables either.  Some of them can be an inch or two thick. 

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