Looming Snow Could be Subway’s First Test

snowystairs.jpg

Tonight/Tomorrow’s snow could be the subway system’s  first test of 2008.  Wet weather tends to cause massive cluster f*cks on most lines.

All it takes is a hold up ad ONE point on a line, and the entire line suffers.   So what do we hope to avoid?

Snow in general isn’t an issue most of the time.  It’s when it melts.  So the first thing we are looking to avoid is having a lot snow fall, and then melt all at once.  When it melts fast, it causes flooding because the system can’t handle all of the water at once.  So that can cause issues with signals shorting out, or  third rails being under water.

The other scenario of disaster is if the snow falls as a slushy mess and then freezes.  This can cause some slipping issues on the areas of track that are above ground.  Eventually, a very thin, very slick layer of ice forms on the rails.  Trains try to stop and slide.  Or the reverse happens.  Trains try to move and the wheels slip.

So I guess it is just wait an see.  Be careful, that first step can be a…

8 thoughts on “Looming Snow Could be Subway’s First Test

  1. How come the subway that has been around for over 100 years still hasn’t figured out what to do if it snows or rains? Seems like they’ve been dealing with this for quite some time right?

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  2. Add to the above point that the majority of the NYC system is housed underground, under however many feet of concrete …

    But seriously, we have inherited the infrastructure of previous generations. To try and revamp how snow and rain is drained out of the city would take a reconstruction effort similar to the Big Dig in Boston, and most likely twice as expensive ..

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  3. if the MTA would put a ban on those god-damn free newspapers, drainage would be improved. those papers are out everyday, most don’t make it to a trash can and end up on the tracks somehhere.

    also, mta needs to do a better job of clearing the tracks of plastic bottles and other types of trash left by not only passengers, but contractors as well.

    these few steps would improve drainage and would not cost much

    asking new yorkers, especially young, cocky, self-righteous,arogant ones to stop littering would be more of a challenge

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  4. But they didn’t realize that snow and rain could get into the underground system 50 years ago and start fixing it? The subway was always run by idiots? 100 years of idiots, that’s the MTA, going my way…..or that way, or some way.

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  5. Patrick: For the most part, the idiots weren’t in charge. Rather, the idiots were the people who couldn’t understand why the fares had to go up from 5 cents. For decades, the MTA was hobbled with a five-cent fare, and that’s why its finances and infrastructure aren’t where they should be now.

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