MBCR: Worcester 4-Hour Train Ride ‘Frustrating For Everybody’

BOSTON (CBS) – The MBTA’s problems appear to be moving from bad to worse.

Several commuter rail passengers were livid Monday night when their train took four hours to get from Boston to Worcester.

WBZ NewsRadio’s Karen Twomey reports

It left Boston at 5 p.m., then it broke down in Newtonville. Another train helped push it all the way to Worcester, where it arrived at 9 p.m.

The same train was reportedly three hours late during the Monday morning commute.

WBZ-TV’s David Robichaud reports

A spokesperson for the MBCR, which runs the commuter rail, initially issued a brief comment Monday night, saying it was “very unfortunate.”

Spokesman Scott Farmelant had a more detailed statement Tuesday for WBZ-TV:

“The significant delays experienced by our customers on the Framingham/Worcester line last evening, which reflect the age of the commuter rail locomotive fleet, are extremely frustrating for everybody involved with MBTA passenger rail service. Both the T and MBCR recognize the need for renewed investment in equipment and are actively pursuing opportunities to lease additional locomotives.”

More from Karen Twomey
  • erictomlin

    Shame on whoever cleared this locomotive for use in the evening commute after it had already broken down on the morning commute. Common sense seems to be in short supply at the MBCR. Thankfully the 508 train into Boston from Worcester this morning was right on time. I wouldn’t wish a day like yesterday on my worst enemy. OK, well maybe my worst enemy, but that’s about it.

  • Nab71

    I think Gilligan is in charge.

  • SOS

    The MBTA BETTER honor on-time service refund requests for Commuters stuck on this train.

  • markthefoamguy

    I remember taking that train into Boston from Worcester the day of the 2007 World Series parade. It broke down in Framingham, stranding us for 2 hours. We did not get to Boston until the very end of the parade – effectively ruining what should have been a glorious day. And NOTHING from the MBTA, not even an apology.

  • Joe

    The morning train took 3 and a half hours to get into Boston and 4 and a half hours getting to Worcester. I spent more time on the train than I did at work!!

    I commute from Worcester daily and it has gotten to the point were I know at least once a week I will be on or stuck behind a broken train. The MBTA only gets me to my destination on time about 30% of the time.

    When is the MBCR contract up for renewal? I don’t know about anyone else but I intend to stand in the Governors office until he rejects their contract.

    • Jeff Kingston

      First of all the Governor would have to care about the people who use the commuter rail. If you aren’t involved with a special interest group, or someone with real deep pockets who can contribute to his campaign warchest you are invisible.

  • Maca37

    They (MCBR) have no clue what they are doing other than taking profits. Equipment should be upgraded in a timely manner to maintain a current fleet. They complain about the age of the trains and never buy any. Now they want to stop the on-time guarantee because it is cutting into the profits because the trains are late seems like a catch-22. Who pays for this the commuter. I wonder if anyone has lost or is danger of losing their job because of tardiness.

  • Al

    What do you expect – Cement Heads awrding contracts to Cement Heads!!!!

  • train hostage

    I noticed that FIVE trains passed us while we were sitting on the tracks at Newtonville. Tell me why the P525 did not stop to push us at least to Framingham? This makes no sense, no sense at all. Who is managing planning and logistics? What are their emergency plans? Why would they consider putting broken equipment back on the tracks? There are serious issues with the Worcester/Framingham line. Aside from equipment issues there are an inordinate number of local trains and too few express trains. The express trains are PACKED and the locals are virtually empty! People commuting from west of Framingham are getting the short end of the stick. The media should take a hard look at this.Something is seriously wrong here.

  • Stephen Graham

    Why didn’t they have train 527 (the 5:35 from South Station) come from behind and push us out? Instead they sent it all the way out the I-95 at the 11-mile marker, switched tracks, and then reversed back 7 miles to hook up and pull us. I was watching the clock. This wasted almost a whole hour. And then they made double stops at every station. More waste. Why not have everyone move once into the front trainset for local stops, and then only stop once. Gross inefficiency! This isn’t commuting. It’s ABUSE!!!

  • Chicky

    My husband commuted from Shirley to Boston via the commuter rail up until a year and a half ago and it was pure brutality. The ridiculous amount of money spent monthly on a pass and then more than half the time the trains weren’t running any where near on time. They were always breaking down and waiting for a push, didn’t have heat/AC in some cars majority of time and were disgusting. There is never enough express trains either. He would either have to leave work at 1:00pm (which is ridiculous) to catch the train at 1:15 to make it home before 6pm, or if he couldn’t take that (because he works normal hours), he had to wait until the 4:40 express, but it was so packed all the time it wasn’t worth it. There isn’t any trains that run from North Station PAST South Acton after the 1:15 until the 4:40. I eventually gave up trying to figure out/guess what time he was going to be home since it was NEVER on schedule. It was the biggest waist of time (half of his day most of the time) and money. Thank god he doesn’t work in Boston anymore.

  • ACU

    The biggest fear in life is dying on a Commuter Train. We are not commuters, we are cattle!!!

  • R Scott Hawkins

    i was on both trains yesterday and feel the media is missing two cruital points that added to our frustrations.
    1. The P525 train was allowed to drive right by us an not offer assistance adding to our delays
    2. MBTA has announced plans to eliminate the rebate of fares on trains more than 30 minutes late, removing any incentive for on time performance

  • http://boston.cbslocal.com/2011/03/01/mbcr-no-apology-could-suffice/ MBCR: No Apology Could Suffice « CBS Boston

    […] BOSTON (CBS) — The people in charge of the commuter rail say there is no apology that they could issue that would make things better for the people who were on broken down trains for five hours Monday. […]

  • Jicardo Majarshin

    You knuckleheads that ride the MBTA and pay dearly for the privilege of poor service deserve what you get. The majority of you voted for more of the same. No doubt the Dweeb and the Dems are working on a plan to hike the fares to pay for those rocket-scientists running the trains. Bundle up.

  • http://boston.cbslocal.com/2011/03/02/keller-large-mbcr-heads-need-to-roll/ Keller @ Large: MBCR Heads Need To Roll « CBS Boston

    […] company hired by the state to run local commuter rail, are apologizing as hard as they can for Monday’s fiasco on the Boston to Worcester line, where passengers were stuck for hours on a disabled train amid overall […]

  • Cynic

    Buy a car you cheapos and drive to work

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