Reopen News: As workers return, calls for MTA to resume overnight subway service

New York News
NEW YORK CITY (WABC) — As New Yorkers head back to work Monday, the MTA is reminding everyone things have changed in the last 100 days.

Officials also say overnight cleaning is still essential, while at the same time assuring riders that the subways are safe.

That word comes as some are calling for the MTA to reopen the subway during overnight hours as the city enters Phase 2.

Council member Ydanis Rodriguez of the Transportation Committee said Sunday that many immigrant and working class New Yorkers have been severely impacted by the train closures between 1 a.m. and 5 a.m. each night.

Rodriguez said as more overnight workers return to work on Monday, the MTA needs to immediately resume regular service.

“I believe that it is important that the MTA reopen the service tomorrow, and if by any chance they don’t do that, then they should present the plan on when those trains will be open,” he said Sunday.

The MTA released the following statement:

“Council Member Rodriguez pandering to advance his political campaign is nothing new, but is devoid of facts. The MTA is undertaking the most aggressive cleaning effort in its history and the overnight subway shutdown has been critical to the daily disinfection of the entire train fleet, keeping New Yorkers as safe as possible while at the same time providing robust alternate bus service.”

The overnight closures are part of the MTA’s plan to help fight coronavirus in NYC.

The MTA is currently disinfecting 3,500 subway cars at least once daily, and some cars are cleaned as many as seven times a day at end-of-line stations.

The transit agency is also testing an ultraviolet technology that is proven to kill COVID-19. The technology is the same that used in hospitals and in some police, fire and ambulances houses.

Among other changes riders can expect as they return Monday: new social distancing signs, hand sanitizer in stations, and everyone is required to wear masks.

Ridership is still only expected to be at about 40 percent or less from where it was pre-COVID, when 8 million people were using mass transit each day.

While service is on a normal schedule Monday, it is still suspended overnight from 1 a.m. to 5 a.m. for that intense cleaning of trains and stations.

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