MTA Statement On Cleaning Program

In today’s New York Daily News, the paper had a strongly worded piece on the cleaning program the MTA runs that includes hiring outside firms to bring new methods to cleaning to the system. The piece stemmed from the paper witnessing an accident at the Clinton-Washington Avenues stop on the last Tuesday. Here is a link to their piece.

Just a few minutes ago, I received a response to the piece from MTA Chief External Affairs Officer Maxwell Young which stated:

The Daily News article today is misleading and misses the point of the entire station and car cleaning project. Two years ago the New York City Transit system was declared to be in a state of emergency due to its decline in performance.

Then-MTA Chairman Joe Lhota and outside consultants created an emergency management plan to correct mismanaged systems, including water management, signal repairs, station cleaning and more. The state and city provided $836 million to pay for overtime and outside contractors to bring new means and methods to a broken system.

The car cleaning and station cleaning contractors use chemicals approved by NYCT safety experts, and state of the art cleaning equipment. The approved chemicals are commonly used – for example the chemicals used by the fleet washing company are used by the same company in states around the country and on other fleets, including surrounding states and Amtrak and New Jersey Transit.

The equipment that backfired was a pressure washer. It is a common piece of equipment widely used by cleaning companies and even the MTA. A backfire sometimes happens to an engine. It’s not something that was caused by it being faulty or not properly maintained.

“‎The independent contractors’ new means and methods have been a great success. Water is now being effectively cleared from the tracks and new modern equipment has been introduced, cars and stations are cleaner and signals have been repaired.

The success of the Subway Action Plan is inarguable, as shown by the better performance numbers. Now phase 2 of the Subway Action Plan is to implant those new management systems into a restructured MTA, through the reorganization plan due later this month.”

xoxo Transit Blogger

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