Interview: Keolis GM On Commuter Rail Performance

MBTA Commuter Rail

(MBTA Commuter Rail)

BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) — The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) Commuter Rail can be considered complicated. Sometimes trains break down. But, most of the trains Keolis Commuter Services operates for the MBTA do run on time.

The MBTA Commuter Rail has an on time performance of almost 90 percent. WBZ NewsRadio’s Karyn Regal spoke with Keolis General Manager David Scorey about recent performance, how the system works, and why it works the way it does.

“Every train has to be inspected once every 24 hours. There are mandatory safety inspections mandated by the [Federal Railroad Administration] to make sure that things like brakes are working, safety systems are functioning properly. And we do some additional inspections to make sure the passenger environment is clean and comfortable, and so on. That happens every 24 hours,” Scorey said.

However, trains can breakdown. According to Scorey, it can take some time to handle the situation.

“So the engineer needs to go back and see what’s going on and do their best to fix the problem,” Scorey said. “That does take some time. And of course, while all of that is going on, we’re trying to assess how long this problem is likely to last and what the impact is going to be for passengers.”

Scorey said that delays can also occur because the Commuter Rail shares lines, with Amtrak and freight railroads, for example, and may have to yield to another train.

“It may not seem like the right decision for passengers on one particular train, but what we’re thinking about is the overall network dynamic because it is really complex and intricate, and trying to minimize the overall impact,” Scorey said.

Listen to the full conversation:

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