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Discussion relating to commuter rail, light rail, and subway operations of the MBTA.

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Postby BC Eagle » Sat Jul 03, 2004 2:46 pm

The only concrete plan that has been established is that no bags larger than a purse or briefcase will be allowed on the Orange Line. Those with bags on the Orange Line will be searched. On the other lines, bags will be randomly searched. Random searching may continue on all lines past the convention, however the T's only statement has been that "MBTA Police are looking long-term at a program that strikes a proper balance between individual rights and the T’s obligation to ensure its customers’ safety."

This isn't the announcement of a long-term policy, but that the T police are trying to find a solution that will balance individual rights and guard against terrorism in the long-term.
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Postby Zaphod » Sat Jul 03, 2004 4:45 pm

CS wrote:I haven't looked that far into this, but if in fact the MBTA will ban all bags on the orange line, search them on all others and continue this past the convention - then there is a clear problem with that.

Also, I am very suprised that action isn't being taken in New York City. Not only is it in the city that was already attacked, it's the Republicans - you think that the threat would be more for them then us.


Perhaps New Yorkers have a better understanding of the line between being safe and living in fear.
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Postby BC Eagle » Sat Jul 03, 2004 5:39 pm

New York is a potential swing state. The Republicans wouldn't dare do anything to angry the New York voters.
BC Eagle
 

Postby SnoozerZ49 » Sat Jul 03, 2004 11:09 pm

You might want to check out the LIRR message board. It seems they are also facing some of the issues we are in Boston. The United Transportation Union web site is mentioning that a large number of exits to Penn Station are going to be closed. Check it out!!
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Postby Ken W2KB » Mon Jul 05, 2004 9:35 am

The NY plan for during the convention is to stop all trains outside the city and have a walkthrough of police officers with bomb-sniffing dogs before allowing trains to proceed. At least a couple hundred dogs will be used for the operation. Passengers have been advised to expect delays, but at least trains will operate.
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Postby Aero_rail_nut » Thu Jul 08, 2004 7:54 am

The funny thing is the RNC will be held right over a major transit hub, Madison Square Garden. MSG is built right over Penn Station, and it houses Amtrak, NJ Transit, LIRR, and the 7th and 8th avenue Subways. So shutting down Penn Station will basically paralyze the East Coast, at least Amtrak wise.

I think the LIRR plan is to stop trains at Jamaica station, and/or Woodside Station, and do train sweeps. I am not sure about NJ Transit, but the Hoboken Terminal seems to be the most logical place to do searches.

I will be in Boston during the DNC, and was hoping to use the "T" for transit. I am just curious what lines will be effected by the DNC coming to town?
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Postby Ron Newman » Thu Jul 08, 2004 8:18 am

The DNC has only minor effects on the subway system: the Orange Line will pass through North Station without stopping, and the Green Line will terminate at Haymarket rather than North Station. (It's already closed north of North Station for a year's construction.)

Some buses that normally run into Haymarket are being rerouted.

The main DNC changes involve the commuter rail system, as North Station is closed. Fitchburg passengers transfer to the Red Line at Porter Square; Haverhill passengers transfer to the Orange Line at Oak Grove; Lowell Line passengers transfer to buses at Anderson/Woburn (though trains continue south to West Medford); Rockport and Newburyport passengers transfer to buses at Lynn (though trains continue south to Chelsea).
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Postby BC Eagle » Sun Jul 18, 2004 2:25 pm

This seems to be the most appropriate place to post about DNC security on the T...

According to Friday's Globe, armed National Guard Troops will be stationed on MBTA property during the Convention week to provide extra security. It sounds like it's going to be like Italy or France around here that week.
BC Eagle
 

ACLU: Lawsuit vs. T is in the bag

Postby Ron Newman » Tue Jul 20, 2004 8:01 am

From today's Boston Herald:

Civil rights advocates say they're ready to let fly with lawsuits as soon as T cops begin random baggage checks, a controversial anti-terrorism move set to begin sometime in the next week.

     The local chapter of the National Lawyers Guild plans to seek a court injunction to halt the searches once they begin.

     ``We are just waiting for them,'' said Executive Director Urszula Masny-Latos.

     Meanwhile, the American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts is calling on T riders who get searched to fill out a questionnaire at its Web site to help focus the group's legal challenge.

     ``The T has been very, very difficult to pin down on what the searches will consist of and when it will begin,'' said Nancy Murray of the ACLU. The group's questionnaire, set to go online today, asks if passengers ``have any reason to suspect that you were stopped as a result of your race, religion, ethnicity or age?''
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Postby Ron Newman » Tue Jul 20, 2004 8:05 am

Both the ACLU and the National Lawyers Guild are collecting information from MBTA riders about the searches.

If you have been searched and are willing to help these organizations, please fill out the ACLU's reporting form and call the National Lawyers Guild's special "MBTA Watch" answering machine at 617.497.0175.

When calling the NLG number, state the
date and time, location, and method of the searches (dogs, wands, etc.) in your message.
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Postby jwhite07 » Tue Jul 20, 2004 8:29 am

So... the question of the day is - has anyone here been searched or seen a search in progress?

Not I!
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Postby Ron Newman » Tue Jul 20, 2004 8:30 am

Not me, not yet. I don't think the searches have started yet, or else we'd already be hearing about it from the ACLU and NLG.
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Postby BC Eagle » Fri Aug 13, 2004 8:13 am

MBTA Halts Baggage Screening After Convention

http://www.boston.com/news/local/articl ... _screening

Looks like all that paranoia about searches becoming a permanent part of the T was for nothing.
BC Eagle
 

Postby SbooX » Fri Aug 13, 2004 8:41 pm

Its not paranoia when they really are out to get you. It could very well be a permanent part of riding the T, in fact they specifically say so in the article. Everytime Washington issues some bogus threat level increase the searches will return. They even say they will randomly begin searching at random.

And of course, any Arab man headed to the airport on the T will be searched no matter the official policy of the MBTA.
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Postby BC Eagle » Sat Aug 14, 2004 9:40 pm

You claim that the T is "out to get you" and that the threat levels are bogus, but do you offer any evidence? I absolutely agree that the terror threat system could use some retooling to be more effective, however I don't think it's completely bogus. I also don't buy into such a blanket statement such as the T is "really out to get you."
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