MBTA Urges Riders To Plan Ahead for Upcoming Cold Weather


Photo: James Rojas/WBZ NewsRadio

BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) — As Massachusetts faces drastically cold temperatures this week, the MBTA is calling on commuters to plan ahead and allow for extra travel time.

The upcoming forecast calls for a high Tuesday of around 12 degrees, with Monday and Tuesday Night low temperatures predicted to be in the single digits. This is without wind chill though, and the National Weather Service estimates wind gusts Monday could get up to 23 miles per hour.

MBTA General Manager Steve Poftak said in a statement while the MBTA will work to make sure all trains and buses operate on their regular schedules, some delays could occur due to the cold and windy weather.

"Because of the extremely cold temperatures anticipated this week, we want to encourage our customers to dress warmly, allow for extra travel time, and be mindful of icy conditions," Poftak said. "The safety of its customers and employees continues to be the first priority for the MBTA.”

As a part of the MBTA's plan to limit delays, the agency will be implementing its cold weather mitigation strategies. These include storing buses and trains indoors overnight, regular checks of vehicles that are outside, and cycling the use of trains to make sure they are not sitting idle for extended periods of time.

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For trains not in use, the MBTA said it will have teams working to test doors, breaks, and propulsion systems for any moisture build-up or freezing. Crews will also be inspecting rights-of-ways to make sure all of the heaters for track switches and the third rail are all still working through the cold.

WBZ's James Rojas spoke with one commuter outside the Copley subway station to get their thoughts about the upcoming cold weather impacting their commute.

"Truthfully this is my first winter commuting to this job and relying on the [MBTA]," he said. "I haven't actually experienced it yet so we'll just have to see what happens.

The MBTA is asking all riders to go to their website for up-to-date information on any potential delays or to check out their Twitter account for service updates.

WBZ's James Rojas (@JamesRojasNews) reports.

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