Despite the total number of subway track fires falling slightly over the past few years the MTA still has a major problem with garbage blazes causing extensive commuting delays.
Carl Hamann, the acting vice president of system safety for the MTA blames the delay causing blazes on commuters who refuse to dispose of their trash properly. In July of 2017, the MTA started an $836 million Subway Action Plan that included a campaign aimed at getting commuters to take their trash with them as they left the subway system instead of throwing the trash on the tracks.
In an effort to decrease the subway littering problem the MTA convinced the state Department of Environmental Conservation to raise the subway littering fine from $50 to $100. Despite the ongoing efforts put forth by the MTA over 3000 tons of garbage has been collected off NYC subway tracks so far this year.
The MTA hopes the implementation of three new vacuum trains specifically designed to suck debris up away from the tracks and the addition of station maintenance managers will help curtail fire delays.
An article published in the New York Post said that subway Chairman Joe Lhota had considered banning food consumption on the subways, but decided against it.
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