THE SUN CHRONICLE
February 18, 2015
The general manager of the MBTA said Tuesday that fighting to restore full transit service after a series of crippling snowstorms is like a war, and her agency is battling to take back every station and every rail line.
Beverly Scott said in a news conference that she knows people are frustrated, but everything possible is being done to get the system back to full service.
Machines and people are being used to clear tracks of snow, private buses have been hired to make up for a shutdown of the Red Line, and everyone – from the governor to MBTA employees – is working to fix the problems, she said.
She also held out the possibility that commuters with monthly passes could be reimbursed, but said the financial implications of refunds has to be studied first.
“All of this has to be factored into what the financial situation is,” she said.
But her comments, and a remark Monday that it could take 30 days for the system to fully recover from the storms, did not ease the concerns of local legislators who said the days of lost and reduced service is unacceptable.
“What an epic failure,” said state Sen. James Timilty, D-Walpole.
“For everything to come unhinged at once, I have to think, is unprecedented. I don’t remember it ever being this bad.”
Timilty said he has been complaining for eight years that the MBTA spends too much money and attention on expansion, and not enough on improving the service and equipment it already has.
“This demonstrates the monumental ineptitude of the agency,” he said.
State Sen. Richard Ross, R-Wrentham, said the storms are exposing problems with MBTA equipment and maintenance that should have been addressed long ago.
“Think of all the people who depend on the MBTA on a daily basis,” he said, adding that many people cannot get to work or school without it.
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