LIRR says it won't move up service restoration from March 29
The Long Island Rail Road is not moving up the timetable to restore the service cuts that lead to packed trains.
Commuters have been faced with some packed trains ever since the LIRR rolled back its schedule, but after backlash, they added back some trains and said it would return to its previous schedule March 29.
Many riders have said waiting until the end of the month isn't soon enough and having to be in crowded trains is risking them getting COVID-19.
"Obviously, it feels uncomfortable. I mean we're all trying to get to where we're going, come back home safely without being exposed and this is half the battle," says Michael Rosenblatt.
Commuters hoped when the MTA board met Wednesday that they would push the date up for returning to the old schedule, but those hopes were dashed.
"As we prepare for the March 29 schedule, such work needs to be done like train crew assignments for 366 employees to support the successful restoration of service," says LIRR President Phil Eng.
Gerry Bringmann, of the LIRR Commuter Council, says that timeframe is not ideal but understandable under the circumstances.
"It does take a lot of time, a lot of moving parts, you know, moving equipment around, staff trains properly," he says.
The MTA says they've added over a dozen trains and stops to three branches to ease the crowding conditions until regular service is restored on March 29.