New Haven, Conn. (WTNH) – Nobody likes a long commute, now add late trains on top of that and you aren’t going to get happy travelers. That’s exactly what’s happening on Metro-North’s New Haven line according to a new report.
The sign in New Haven’s Union Station says the trains are all on time, but Metro-North commuters know, their trips are taking longer than they used to.
“So I’ve noticed it a bit. I’d say 5-10 minutes on every ride,” said Mohamed Mounir.
“It seems like they used to take under 100 minutes to get to New York, and now it’s longer than that,” said Ann Prum.
“When I first started doing this trip, it used to take me two hours, one and a half, now it’s two 15, two 30,” Matthew John said.
“It seems about a half an hour for my daily trip,” said Michael Houk.
“Half an hour more, that can’t be good for your personal schedule?”
“No, it’s terrible,” Houk said.
Actually, Metro-North says it’s good for everyone’s safety. After the May derailment in Bridgeport, Metro-North hired an outside company to test the stress on every inch of track. Repairing those issues is forcing trains to slow down. Plus, after the derailment in the Bronx December 1st, the Federal Railroad Administration ordered trains to slow down in three dozen spots for safety’s sake.
Metro-North’s on time rating hasn’t really suffered because of this. From 2012 to 2013, it dropped approximately a percentage point, but that’s because in 2013 they adjusted their train schedules to reflect the fact that the trains are taking longer to get where they’re going.
A Metro-North spokeswoman says the railroad is slowing trains down to err on the side of caution, but it’s clear from talking to commuters that even a small drop in on-time performance can come as a shock when Metro-North has had a 97 percent on time record for years.
“It’s just not as reliable as it used to be,” Matthew John said. “It used to be much more reliable a couple years ago.”
“I mean, they try to get there on time, but there’s been some extenuating circumstances,” said Ann Prum.
“I’m very happy with Metro North,” said Michelle Erwin.