LIRR will revert to previous timetable this month after cuts led to outcry over packed trains

Some viewers posted images on social media of packed train cars again today during the morning commute.

News 12 Staff

Mar 10, 2021, 3:18 AM

Updated 1,223 days ago

Share:

Following two days of headaches and crowding for Long Island Rail Road commuters, the MTA says it will return to its previous timetable later this month.
LIRR President Phil Eng says they heard customer concerns "loud and clear" and will return to the previous timetable on March 29.
Eng says from now until then, the railroad will "strategically add additional trains and lengthen trains to meet evolving ridership levels."
The Long Island Rail Road says it added more trains Tuesday to prevent overcrowding caused by slashing service, and will add even more trains Wednesday.
Following outrage on Monday, the LIRR made changes today by adding a total of nine trains since then, including four trains on the Babylon branch, two trains on the Ronkonkoma line and an additional train leaving Hicksville.
Some viewers posted images on social media of packed train cars again Tuesday during the morning commute.
The pictures sent from viewers Tuesday morning show there was standing room only on some trains even with the changes.
"With the new schedule, they were packed like cattle cars. People on top of one another. They talk about social distancing, people were literally on top of each other," said Kevin Coszier, of Brightwaters.
And it's not just the riders who are concerned. Union head Anthony Simon says some crew members are petrified to come to work.
"We told Phil Eng and Pat Foy this was a mistake. They've caused now a super-spreader. They don't have the ways or means to contact trace," says Simon.
LIRR President Phil Eng says they slashed service based on ridership numbers that they had been monitoring. He says he stands by his original decision to cut them.
"We want all our riders to know that their comfort is important and we're going to continue taking that into account and it's important that we continue to hear from them," says Eng. "I think that what we intended to do was to continue to support the ridership as needed."
When asked why the changes won't come until the end of the month, LIRR officials say it is the quickest amount of time they can put together a new timetable with the same level of service they had before Monday's cuts. Officials added that they can't do the exact same service because some services are different due to track changes.
Did you witness crowded LIRR trains? Send us your photos or videos using the form below.


More from News 12