WASHINGTON - All of the recent safety incidents on Metro has made us wonder if other big city transit systems deal with similar issues. When comparing the transit system in the nation’s capital with the one operating in the Big Apple, there were no derailments in the past year and no safety-related shutdowns in New York City.
Despite fires occuring on the tracks along with smoke and other-related arcing insulator incidents on Metro, D.C. resident Stephanie Kay has not given up hope yet for D.C.'s transit system.
“There have been a lot of hiccups,” she said. “It concerns me a little bit, but I don’t think that our problems are really that much worse than any other public transportation problems.”
Kay is a native New Yorker who has spent her life riding the city's subways before moving to Washington D.C. and riding Metro.
“There were problems in New York – track problems, times when we were stalled between stations for long periods of time in hot subway cars and people were crowded in,” she recalled.
Even so, former D.C. resident Zachary Kiesch insists the two transit systems don't compare.
“Relying on that Red Line really was a struggle,” he said. “It was one of those lines that seemed like it was consistently breaking down and it was just really undependable.”
Kiesch lived in the District for five years before moving to New York.
“Here in New York, I take the train to work every day,” Kiesch told us. “I live in Brooklyn. I commute to the city and I don't run into the same issues.”
Keisch is a reporter at our sister station, WNYW.
“I would say as a whole, D.C. is unique in the sense that it seems that things are never running smoothly and it's odd considering how much smaller that system is,” he said.
Along with being smaller, the Metro rail system is also newer. New York's first underground line opened in 1904. D.C.’s first underground line opened in the 1970s.
As far as those now notorious arcing insulators that have been causing the fires and smoke in D.C.’s subway system, New York’s subway system has reported zero of those types of incidences. In fact, a spokesperson for New York’s transit system said he did not even know what we were talking about when we mentioned the word insulator.