Green Line Service Returns to Normal After L’Enfant Plaza Incident; Statement from Mayor Bowser

Photo by PoPville flickr user Jim Havard


“As of 5 a.m., normal Green Line service has been restored in both directions.

During the Tuesday morning commute, trains will operate as follows:
• Green Line: Regular service, every 6 minutes, between Branch Ave & Greenbelt
• Orange Line: Trains every 8 minutes between Vienna & New Carrollton
• Silver Line: Trains every 12 minutes between Wiehe-Reston East & Largo, with 8-car trains to provide additional capacity
• Blue Line: Trains every 12 minutes at Franconia-Springfield and Van Dorn Street, every 6 minutes at all other stations
Yellow Line: Service is replaced by additional Blue Line trains running between Huntington & Largo every 12 minutes

All Metrorail stations are open.”

From the Mayor’s office last night:

“Mayor Muriel Bowser issued the following statement regarding the Metrorail fatality during this afternoon’s commute:

“We are all saddened by today’s fatality aboard the Metrorail, and our thoughts and prayers go out to the family of the passenger who passed away. I want to thank our brave first responders who assisted passengers during the evacuation and with treatment at the scene. I have been in contact with the WMATA leadership, and we will continue to keep the District’s resources available in the aftermath of the incident.”

59 Comment

  • it’s totally inexcusable and those clowns (and the clowns at WMATA) need to be held accountable. It’s scary to think what could have happened if this had happened during peak rush hour.

  • Muriel Bowser proves once against what a disgraceful empty suit she is – where is the statement to hold WMATA accountable for what occurred? Where is the outrage over a woman’s life lost, people in critical care, and over eighty others sent to the hospital?!

    Is it because she’s complicit in WMATA’s unsafe practices in that she spent the past two years deferring her responsibility on the Metro oversight board?

    What a joke…

    • Okay, I’m as fervently anti-Bowser as the next guy. But I don’t don’t really think that reflexively instigating a witch hunt is the best way to deal with this. Metro probably did a lot of things wrong, but I don’t think ginning up a public frenzy is the way to deal with this. She seems to have done okay on this so far.

      • Just to clarify but “doing okay” I meant basically she’s doing nothing. So it’s not really much of a victory. She just hasn’t screwed it up yet.

        • You can screw it up by doing nothing. A real leader demands accountability, transparency, and action to address serious problems. This lady ain’t it.

      • gotryit

        I agree. I’m not a fan of Bowser, but people are stretching logic a little to far on some of their complaints.
        It seems that most of the time what they’re asking for are the same things they criticize her for. A “statement to hold WMATA accountable” does nothing. **Actions** to hold WMATA accountable sound like the right direction, but that’s a lot harder and won’t happen on day 1.

        • But her comments don’t imply actions will come either (on day 2 or 100). All it says is that she has been in contact with WMATA. The statement is bare minimum and consistent with an individual who has no plan or sense of leadership.

        • Wow. I really dislike Bowser but this is ridiculous. Don’t be so whiny. When make inane complaints like this it becomes easier for the administration to brush off the serious complaints as complainers who will be negative no matter what happens.

        • Senator Warner’s statement was better than Mayor Bowser’s statement. It included the following:
          “While the National Transportation Safety Board investigation is just getting underway and may require months to complete, Virginians are climbing back aboard Metro trains today,” Warner said. “Metro passengers deserve to know as soon as possible about Metro’s safety protocols for this type of incident, and those answers should be provided right away.”

      • I think a public frenzy is exactly the right way to deal with it. Until a few weeks ago, Bowser was on the WMATA Board. She’s part of the problem. If a few years of nominally being in charge of WMATA didn’t make her take its problems seriously, why would she now? Absent a frenzy …

        She said her biggest accomplishment on the Board was “leading the charge to have Metro adopt an affordable housing policy”

    • +1000

    • “Thanks, Obama.”

      Let’s give Mayor Bowser a break on this one. Where are the calls for accountability from the Governors of VA and MD? Although the disaster happened in DC, they have equal standing on the Metro board as our mayor, right?

      • Thanks for the snarky strawman comment

        No, Bowser doesn’t get a pass – she served on Metro’s governing board that overseas the system, so she’s part of the problem. Sure, the state governors have a shred of accountability in that they provide funds to the system, but not as much as person who served directly on its oversight board.

  • This has to be the most convoluted metro service announcement. Why not just say the yellow line is CLOSED?! Take Blue line to get to Virginia! There were dozens of confused riders this morning at L’Enfant.

    • I agree. “Replace” is not an accurate word to describe the whole situation. Blue only replaces Yellow for 2 stations at the end of the line in VA, but the rest is otherwise not operational. Under the same logic, Green replaces Yellow, too.

  • Heads need to roll at all levels. A pathetic disaster response that made it obvious that if there are any emergency protocols WMATA is not able to follow them. A true shame for the city. The capital of the most powerful nation deserves better.

  • I think they need to eliminate a lot of the middle management at metro. THey are highly compensated but do little to improve everyday service. Focus should be put on three areas- drivers/operators/station managers, rolling fleet, and maintenance. Middle management at a transit agency should not be the bulk of payroll as it is now.

    The reason fares keep going up is that we’re paying a lot of folks 6 figures and near 6 figures for positions that don’t justify the salary.

  • This incident should be a wake-up call to everyone that Metro is unable and/or unwilling to effectively handle emergencies or really, anything. DCFD’s response isn’t encouraging either. Future terrorists should take note- the Metro is ridiculously incompetent and would fall on its face if you so much as started a small little fire on its tracks. This is the reality. People need to avoid the system as much as possible by biking, walking, etc. The system should be squeezed until the powers that be finally wake up and demand accountability and an end to this shameless jobs program. In reality, though, this incident will probably be sweeped under the rug, because the people in charge don’t take the metro, and no one wants to start listing the problems with management and employees alike. The proletariat will just have to deal with the continual incompetence, embarrassing lack of reliability, poor communication, and the occasional death.

  • “Saddened” = Oh, that’s too bad…
    I’m “saddened” when a person dies after a long illness. I’m “shocked, horrified, outraged” when a person suffocates on public transit during their afternoon commute.

    • +10000000000000000000000. As usual, Bowser does not seem to get it, which does not give me confidence that she even knows how to deal with this. Some great leader we’ve elected.

  • I remember a report on Unsuck Metro from a former maintenance worker saying that lots of maintenance records are/were forged. As the maintenance is done overnight some employees would just sleep instead of doing the required safety checks:

    Scary and I’m glad the NTSB is inspecting – although sadly they have no teeth to really do anything.

  • One of the things that bothers me the most about the metro incident yesterday is the lack of communication between the train conductor and the passengers. The train conductor has to act as a leader in getting people to safety and telling them what to do to stay safe. The complete lack of communication when people are panicking is inexcusable.

    Also, it is totally unclear that metro even knew what to do in this situation. It seems like a logical step would be to GET THE TRAIN OUT OF THE SMOKE FILLED TUNNEL. But the power got turned off instead, leaving everyone in the middle of the smoke, and then no action taken to evacuate them! Either you have to get the people out of the train, or get the train out.

    This is a scenario I have played out in my head wondering what I would do…now knowing metro has no plan for what to do when this happens, when it’s totally obvious it would happen one day is incredibly disappointing. And sadly not surprising…

    • Do you mean communicating by using the “always working intercoms” where everything always comes across clearly with no static and never breaks up? It’s shocking how bad they are. I wonder sometimes whether they are ever checked to see if they are functioning correctly or if the conductors literally don’t know how to use them. I give the conductors the benefit of the doubt though, but who knows….but I do agree with your above statement.

    • I understand the reasoning behind keeping people on the train, especially if you aren’t sure if the third rail has been deactivated, and also to ensure a more orderly evacuation. In hindsight it might have been the best option, but in the moment it isn’t as clear. That said, the announcer should do their best to keep riders informed of what’s happening and help calm people down. There’s a big difference between being stuck in a tunnel for 40 mins knowing what the problem is and that someone is on their way to get you versus being stuck in a tunnel for 40 mins and having no idea if this is isolated, part of some terrorist attack, and if you are going to wait hours for a rescue.

      I once was on a train with an electrical issue. We had just pulled into Smithsonian when we heard two or three loud pops and smoke. Some people though it was gun shots, and the doors were open but we had no idea if it was safer to stay on the train or get out. There was some garbled noise over the announcer and that was it. I eventually just booked it out of the station, because I felt like a sitting duck and wasn’t going to wait to see if this was a more serious problem. Had the announcer just said, “we have encountered a train malfunction and may be delayed momentarily,” it would have gone a long way.

      • west_egg

        In this case, people were kept on the train because the smoke was coming from the tunnel. It was actually better to stay on board — that’s my understanding so far, anyway.
        And I’d like to echo your experience — I was on a train last week where a customer came through during a station stop, yelling for everyone to get off the train because of a fire on one of the cars. Everybody moved to the platform; eventually one of the cars was closed off and people started boarding again. Not so much as a word from the conductor or anyone else. Pathetic.

  • The failings of WMATA or Bowswer or whomever aside, this is a really good reminder that it’s not a good idea to breath in smoke, or to stay in an enclosed space that is filling with smoke. If a train operator tells you to stay inside a stuck train that is filling with smoke, that train operator is telling you to stay and die. Evacuate and get people moving. Find and open the emergency doors and get out of there. Stay as low to the ground as you can and move move move.

    • * breathe in all appropriate instances.

    • I tend to agree with you. Some have said opening the doors would have made things worse, but they’re putting a lot more trust in Metro than is justified. We’re actually extremely lucky only one person died. I could see this happening again, and it could end up like the Korean ferry, where all the kids and passengers obeyed to captain until everyone went down and died. We’re conditioned to obey, but if the ones giving the orders are morons, you need to think for yourself and act. I’d never place my life in the hands of a Metro employee if I could at all help it.

      • The one circumstance that I can think of in which you’d want to leave the doors closed is if you can see or feel a fire directly outside the door–opening the door would let more smoke AND fire into the train car. But if you’re in an enclosed space that’s filling with smoke, THINGS ARE ALREADY GETTING WORSE. You’re almost certainly talking about a really narrow window before you die.

        The analogy isn’t perfect, but one of the ideas really emphasized during my training before a deployment to Iraq was “get off the X.” If you find yourself in an ambush, move away from the ambush. Ambushes are fixed; they don’t move with you. Move and live, stay and die. Plenty of emergencies are just like that–fixed in one location. If you face an immediate threat to your life–and an enclosed, unventilated space is just that–then move. Even if there’s another risk in your new location, the risk is worth it–certain death vs less-than-certain death.

        I’m saddened but not surprised that people did not take the initiative, that they sat still and waited, listening to an authority that almost certainly was not qualified to make a decision like that. What if, instead of smoke, the train car was filling with actual fire? At what point will metro riders take responsibility for their own safety?

        • The washington post article states the driver communicated that the plan was to back up the train as soon as power was restored. Anyone on the tracks may have been hit/killed with the low visibility either by that train, or one in front of it. Or, they could have become disorientated and never made it out.

          I think it’s an important detail that the driver’s cabin is not a hermetically sealed enclosure, so they were aware of the situation and also presumably in communication with dispatch. There’s very often a nominal “smokey” smell in Metro due to the brakes, and the last thing we need are people flipping out and running on the tracks without proper situational awareness.

          • There is a side walkway for evacuations… No need to walk on the tracks. If I was on that train I would have opened the car end door and walked out of there pronto. at some point you need to save yourself when the system fails.

          • Got it–there’s a risk in getting off the train. But someone was exposed too long and died. That person’s risk of death from staying on the train was 100%. Certain death. Several other people came pretty close too. So calculate your odds: are you safer in an enclosed box filling with smoke (smoke inhalation being the leading cause of death from fires, not actual burning), or not?

    • In a hurried panic, in a pitch black hazy air in a tunnel underground, how many folks do you figure would accidentally walk into the third rail and die of electrocution? Surely more than one. You advice of not breathing in smoke is a good one, though. That’s always prudent.

    • I get that this is trying to be helpful, but how could they have done so when it was pitch black and they couldn’t see where the electric third rail was located? If someone had done what you’re advising and been electrocuted, we’d then have some busy body on here saying that in the event of an emergency, you should always remain calm and follow instructions.

      • TBH, the 3rd rail is covered with a non-conductive safety barrier. You would need to make physical contact with the electrified rail under the safety barrier (i.e., you would need to purposefully stick your foot or hand into the gap under the barrier to reach the electrified rail). Enough people have cell phones with a light or flash that you’d be able to get out and see in the tunnel. I’ll take my chance by walking through the tunnel and staying on the far side away from the 3rd rail (5% of accidental death) than get suffocated in a metal box (60-70% chance of dying).

        • I think you’re seriously overestimating how calm and capable people will be during a smokey emergency. If it gets too thick and you have to get down, there’s now a lot more of you that can make contact with the third rail. Some people aren’t very mobile, some people have asthma or other conditions which will make it more difficult for them to evacuate with care and precision.
          I’m really interested in knowing when power to the third rail was cut. I would definitely have waited a good amount of time on the train, because getting the train to the platform is a far better option than evacuating on the tracks. Then I think it becomes a waiting game, how long is too long to wait, especially when you don’t know what’s happening on the tracks? If the self evacuaters started to get off the train too early and it was about to move, I would be pissed at them for putting everyone on the train in danger. But, since you don’t know what’s going to happen in the future, you have to the make the best decisions with the information you have at the time. But this is Metro, so we can assume no one really had any information.

          • +1. I can’t believe anyone is trying to blame the trapped riders for not self-evacuating.
            We hear those recorded Metro announcements practically every day telling us that unless there is an “imminent threat” (which I think the guy maybe pronounces “eminent”), we’re safer staying in the car. In this situation, how were they to gauge whether the smoke constituted an “imminent threat”?
            Granted, Metro screws up enough that it’s not always a good idea to follow its advice, but I think the trapped riders were in a tough situation. Were they supposed to distrust/ignore the train operator from the get-go, and immediately jump out of the cars? Was there a time cutoff beyond which they should have ignored the train operator, and if so, when exactly would that have been??
            The screwup here was Metro’s, not the passengers’. It sounds like Metro took too long to turn off the third rail and the firefighters wouldn’t go in until it was turned off. (I don’t entirely understand that either. Wouldn’t firefighters be able to avoid the third rail?)

          • Well, I’m wondering how long it would take for people to make a decision to leave a train filling with smoke. From yesterday, it sounds like people are willing to wait at least 40 minutes or more, even with passing out, vomiting, and dying. That’s remarkable. Remind me to never follow the herd in an emergency situation. Timing in events like this can be critical, and counting on Metro to tell you when you’re in “imminent” danger is pretty insane, considering the caliber of person working at WMATA (and the long track record of incompetence, recklessness, and general stupidity). If DCFD had not intervened almost an hour later, I’m seriously thinking right now that a lot of these folks might have waited patiently to die and then just died.

          • I still can’t believe anyone is blaming the passengers. This situation was not their fault.
            And as Jeslett notes, what people say they would do in a given situation and what actually happens in such a situation are not necessarily the same.

          • Don’t mistake diagnosis or advice for blame. And I feel the need to hammer home this point: gauging whether smoke presents an imminent threat is easy because smoke in an enclosed space always constitutes an imminent threat. It killed one person and it almost killed a lot more. When you’re trapped in an enclosed space filling with smoke, your clock is ticking, and if you don’t know when or if rescue is coming–which should be the default assumption–you have got to move yourself. Yes, it will be risky–but dying from some inhalation is riskier.

            Like I said, I’m not surprised that people deferred to an inadequate authority, but I’m saddened by it. I once saw Metro workers attempting to revive someone with a defibrillator. They took their damn sweet time, and no one provided CPR to the victim in the mean time. My guess is, the man died because of the slow response. But these are Metro employees, not paramedics. Why would anyone assume they have the training or instincts to take decisive action to save a life? They’re managers, drivers, mechanics, not doctors.

            This is fact, not blame: taking responsibility for your safety is critical. Read, understand, and memorize evacuation procedures wherever you are. Know your emergency exits. Count the rows so you can find your way in the dark. Use what you’ve got–no light, use your phones. Take a CPR course–it might save a life, but at the least it could give you the confidence to take decisive and immediate action when you need to. Americans are shockingly unprepared to take the slightest actions to save their own lives or the lives of people around you. Be prepared to take the lead and act like you know what you’re doing even if you have no idea–people will look for leaders and it’s better to be giving orders than be at the mercy of a frightened, ignorant crowd. Look people in the eye and give clear instructions: you, use your phone to light up the exit! You, hit the intercom and ask the conductor if the station ahead or behind is filling with smoke! You, help that lady!

            I’m sorry for hogging up all this popville thread space but the thought of anyone dying in a metro train car from an avoidable cause while waiting for incompetent authorities to send help that might never arrive fills me with such existential nausea that I feel the need to scream this from the rooftops. Let your survival instincts work to your advantage: at least one person sat in that train, on those vinyl seats, surrounded by strangers, in the dark, suffocating to death. Is that how you want your last moments to play out?

          • Here’s what I’m not understanding, how is a metro car filling with smoke less dangerous than a tunnel already full of smoke? I agree that it may not be prudent to listen to Metro in all cases, but if you have to evacuate through a higher concentration of smoke, how is that safer?
            These people had no idea how long they would be there, how far they were from the platform, where the smoke was coming from, when the train could move, when the first responders would arrive, or if the third rail was live. Remember, part of the issue is water on the tracks and I’m not sure I would want to evacuate into standing water next a live third rail.

          • Emmaleigh504

            Jeslett is right. Those people had no idea what they would encounter if they left the car besides even more smoke. Tunnel is full of smoke, possibly fire, deadly 3rd rail, and metro trains. This is metro, they had no way of knowing if the 3rd rail was life or not and if another train might hit them further down the track. Then there’s the possibility of fire. I am not convinced that there would be fewer casualties if they evacuated immediately.

          • This is my last one, I promise. Jeslett, staying in the train car means inhaling an increasing amount of smoke and a decreasing amount of air. You will die if you wait long enough. If you leave, you might be stuck in the same situation–but at least there’s a chance you can get out, or get somewhere to breathable air. That’s the key: a certainty of dying versus the chance of living. Sitting in a box filling with smoke will kill you in, well, less than 40 minutes, we can say that with confidence, because it killed someone yesterday. If you were in a room in a burning house, filling with smoke, and you had at least some chance of getting out, do you wait for the fire department to rescue you, or do you book it? I’d book it. Everyone should book it! Well, maybe there’s smoke and maybe it’s dark and maybe this and that, but WITH CERTAINTY you’ll die if you stay put. Someone died, with certainty.

            And your second point–the risk of evacuating onto the tracks, into water, makes one of my points very clearly for me. Someone else has already written this, but here it is again: every Metro car explains how to get out of the car in an emergency, how to avoid the tracks, how to avoid the third rail, how to get to the next station. I’m guessing the vast majority of people haven’t read or understood those instructions, because the issue has been raised repeatedly. Getting off the train doesn’t mean getting onto the tracks–it means getting onto a raised platform next to the tracks, along which there should be blue lights guiding you out of the tunnel. Understanding how to get out of the train in an emergency–reading the instructions and remembering them–is the absolute bare minimum that people can do to keep themselves safe in a metro emergency and you (and lots of other people) haven’t done that. I’ll say it again: that’s the bare minimum. And most people don’t bother. You should bother! You should do the absolute bare minimum to stay alive in a metro emergency.

          • You don’t have to promise me you’re done posting, I think it’s interesting that people have such totally different takes on what to do if they were in this situation. Of course, that’s what they *think* they would do. I include myself in that as well, I acknowledge that I can’t completely predict my response in that situation.

      • Assuming that the emergency lighting doesn’t work, then you can be certain that almost every single person on that train is equipped with a phone, smart or otherwise, that can provide a minimum of illumination. Someone will have a flashlight app. Find that person. Issue clear instructions to that person while looking them in the eye; fake the confidence if you need to, but if they have something you need to survive, enlist them. Read the emergency evacuation instructions NOW, on your commute TODAY. Read them here:

        There’s an amazing and horrifying essay on the 1994 sinking of the MS Estonia in 1994 on The Atlantic’s site. Read it and internalize this: “Survival that night was a very tight race, and savagely simple. People who started early and moved fast had some chance of winning. People who started late or hesitated for any reason had no chance at all. Action paid. Contemplation did not. The mere act of getting dressed was enough to condemn people to death.”

        • DBS, I totally agree with all your assessments here. To talk about the facts and what one should do in an event like this is not to place blame at the feet of the victims. WMATA is 100% responsible for the calamity. But at the same time, there is a VERY good chance that this could happen again and a PoP’ville reader might be able to save herself or the lives of others.
          Although it was a long time ago, I received quite a bit of search & rescue, emergency preparedness, first aid, and survivalist training through many years as an Explorer Scout in high school. The first things to do in a smoke filled place is to (1.) get down on hands and knees to escape the smoke and (2.) get yourself out of the smoke filled area. Both things should happen IMMEDIATELY. That might mean moving in other train cars without smoke. Or, in case all cars are filled with smoke, that means evacuating in a manner that minimizes risks to yourself. As you said, the number #1 cause of death in a fire is suffocation/smoke inhalation, NOT burning. You’re better off getting away from the problem as quickly as possible.

          • Yeah, but as Jeslett was pointing out, the choice was between train cars that were filling with smoke, and the tunnel outside that was already full of smoke. I don’t think the situation was anywhere near as clear-cut as some people are making it out to be.

          • Textdoc, the reason why the tunnel could be safer (and I stress “could”) is that you are entering into a space with MUCH more volume and available oxygen. Smoke rises – this is the reason why you are told to crawl on the floor or duck down low under the smoke in order to gain access to oxygen and escape. A subway tunnel has high ceilings and thus the lower area near the tracks (or the walk way) will have available oxygen. The subway car is a small confined space filled with other bodies consuming a dwindling supply of oxygen while at the same time being replaced by toxic smoke.
            It’s impossible for us to say what the 100% right thing to do was in yesterday’s situation. There is no definitive answer, especially in the midst of panic. It would depend on whether the conditions in the tunnel merely “smokey and hazy” or if the tunnel was completely filled with dense smoke. At a certain point, you’re playing a games of probabilities. Personally, I’d try to determine the source/direction of the smoke and move away from that source as quickly as possible.

          • OP Anon, how would you be able to determine the source and direction of the smoke when you’re inside one of the cars? Even people in the first and last cars probably had a hard time figuring out what was going on, and people in the middle cars would have had no chance.
            The comparison to the MS Estonia story isn’t an apt one. If you’re in a ship at sea and there’s some kind of problem, the idea is to get to the top deck, get a life vest, and get on board a lifeboat if available. Yesterday’s situation was nowhere near that clear — if you don’t know exactly what the danger is and where it’s located, how do you know whether you’re going toward it or away from it?

          • I agree with textdoc, that’s actually what I was going to reply.
            When you’re in a metro car you can see on either side of the car and that’s it. Add in no lights (that’s what was reported I believe), no ability to see the signs on the wall telling you how far to the platform (we know it was a short walk to the platform in retrospect and people are bad at estimating distance in a moving vehicle), and you have no additional information.
            I just think you’re really over simplifying it and not considering how the situation would be for someone who is not a completely mobile adult. Once you decide to open the train doors you’ve screwed everyone over on your car if it’s still less smokey inside than out, so I would hope you would take that into account before being so sure about all these things.

          • Ok, since Jeslett gave me permission, here’s one more: the Estonia is a perfect analogy here. In both case, you face a disaster. In both cases, foolish authorities told people to stay in place, a fatal error. In both cases, you face a choice: you can stay where you are and hope for rescue, in an enclosed space filling with something you can’t breathe that will kill you in a relatively short time. Alternatively, you can try to escape, and face an array of potential, unknown dangers: a dark, smoke filled tunnel. A third rail. Inverted stair wells. Robbers. Maybe you make it into the tunnel and it’s smokey too. Maybe you make it onto the deck and there aren’t enough life preservers. Risks. Most people who tried to escape the Estonia died, but EVERYONE who declined to escape died. If help took a little bit longer to reach the stopped train, how many more people would have died? You can never have perfect information, especially in an emergency, but a lack of perfect information should not be license to make no decision, to stall. This is my basic point: treat a situation like that, a stalled train filling with smoke, as perfect information. The smoke will kill you. Stay in the train and you’ll run out of air eventually, guaranteed. Get out of the train and you at least have a chance to reach safety. Treat smoke in a train as an immediate and imminent threat. You have imperfect information about the conditions outside but you have perfect information about the threat you face inside the train.

          • One more: I’ll echo OP Anon. Even a small amount of emergency or survival training can make you safer–but, more importantly, it can make you more confident. The loudest theme I’m seeing in these comments is “I’d be scared and would not know what to do and am afraid of all the unknowns and therefore could take no action to save myself or others.” I’ve received an array of emergency training and, fortunately, I’ve never had an opportunity to put any of the taught skills into practice. But I did save someone’s life once because the training gave me the confidence to act decisively and quickly, and I’m enormously grateful that I didn’t hem and haw, that I didn’t wait for perfect information, that I didn’t wait for someone in a position of authority to tell me to act or swoop in to save the day. Go take a CPR course or a first aid class, volunteer for a metro evacuation class. Not only will you learn skills that could save the lives of the people around you–including your friends and family–but they will give you CONFIDENCE that you CAN take action to make an emergency situation better.

        • PS – that article on the MS Estonia was incredible. Thanks for the rec! I’ve always wondered about what to do, in case I was ever in a similar situation.

  • Such a horrific situation. I commute on the metro with my toddler everyday, and I just can’t imagine. WMATA is subject to very little accountability, and that’s why the quality is so low. The idea that things are going to change now with Bowser at the helm seems laughable. And the emergency response was so unbelievably bad that people are now coming to the possibly rational conclusion that they are better off taking matters into their own hands than waiting for the official rescue teams. It has to be the case that the metro has killed and injured more of its riders per capita in recent years than most any other train system in the first world, no?

  • If we are being fair here, you’re still statistically FAR safer on metro than you are driving on the beltway. Or even walking.

  • She’s saddened? I want a DC mayor who would find this incident an OUTRAGE and who would bring the full weight of the mayor’s office to ensure a thorough investigation so that something like never happens again!

    • west_egg

      Don’t worry. I’m sure she’s closely monitoring the situation and will, at the right time, bring relevant parties to the table so they can discuss the practicality of assessing potential solutions.

Comments are closed.