Why is N.J. transit so delay-prone?
October 12, 2012 11:04 AM Subscribe
Why is N.J. transit rail so bad, so delay-prone?
posted by Borborygmus to travel & transportation around New Jersey (18 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Last week, I spent an hour and a half on a stalled New Jersey transit train from New York City at 9:30 pm on a Thursday night.
The weather was fine, but the rail line blamed signal problems. I don't ride the train every day, but someone said this happens every three weeks. It seems to happen to me every 20 trips or so.
Does anyone know the cause of these delays and who should be held responsible for them? They seem manageable. It's not like weather caused unexpected problems.
Indeed, when weather causes a delay for the airlines, they don't apologize and refund fares. But they do when its their fault due to technical issues. The airlines should hardly be a model for customer service though.
Some people blamed the unions. Are they the reason?
I know N.J. Transit is one of the most frequently used rail systems in the U.S., and service is better than a lot of places in the U.S. and the world. But the rail system also services the economic capital of the U.S., New York City.
When I was stuck on that stalled train, I did a quick calculation on the massive loss of productivity due to the signal problems. 100 people in a car, 8 cars, times 90 minutes. That's 1200 hours lost, or 150 days, or 30 weeks. That's more than a half-year's worth of work for one person.
I also know that N.J. transit wrestles with Amtrak over priority on the rail lines going into New York, and that many passenger trains across the country suffer delays because the freight companies own the lines, so passenger trains get delayed. But I'm mainly interested in N.J. Transit functions.
Any insights from rail enthusiasts? Thanks!