Anyone who has ever taken a ride on the NYC Subway has seen those huge station gates that sit on hundreds of staircases throughout the system. These same station gates are at the center of a lawsuit brought against the MTA by a former worker who is suing over the lack of subway safety.
The former worker, Peter T. Nichik is suing the agency as he claims they did not provide him enough chains & padlocks for the gates as well as station safety issues being under reported. He claims to have been suspended & subsequently demoted after blowing the whistle. Erik Ortiz of AMNY has more:
A former MTA superintendent claims the subways are unsafe and emergency evacuations are potentially dangerous because station gates can be compromised.
Peter T. Nichik, who had worked in the Division of Station Operations and is a 25-year MTA veteran, filed a lawsuit Tuesday in Brooklyn saying that the agency didn’t give him enough chains and padlocks for gates and that safety conditions in the field were being “underreported.”
Nichik said he complained in 2007 to his bosses that certain station gates were simply left open instead of being padlocked in the open position. That gives the opportunity for anyone to lock the gates themselves creating a “very dangerous and potentially lethal event in an emergency situation,” such as a terrorist attack or explosion, the suit says, according to the New York Post.
Nichik’s attorney said her client wants a federal judge to order the MTA to improve security. He also is seeking back wages and pension benefits as a result of his subsequent suspension and demotion for his whistle-blowing efforts.
Click here for the complete report.
After reading the report, I immediately found myself wanting more information from both sides. Could I believe an agency would punish a whistle blower? Sure, it has happened a lot & will always unfortunately. On the flip side though, would blowing the whistle on a common sense issue really lead to a suspension & demotion? Did he commit other actions that justified the MTA’s actions?
xoxo Transit Blogger