As temperatures plummet across the Bay State, public transportation officials are warning riders to expect transit delays brought on by cold weather.
The MBTA advised commuters to allow themselves extra travel time this week, as it anticipates the “arctic-like conditions” will affect its equipment.
Temperatures are usually in the low- to mid-30s this time of year, but starting Wednesday they will drop into the low- to mid-20s. With windchill, temperatures may dip as low as 25 below zero.
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Crews regularly weatherize equipment and store it in facilities to keep the aging system functioning when winter weather strikes, the T said.
Among the steps being taken this week, according to the T:
- Subway trains are having their air tanks and air lines flushed out to avoid freezing.
- Subway trains being stored in the tunnels and in maintenance facilities overnight.
- Extra subway personnel will be on hand to constantly move trains, test brakes, cycle doors and check air systems.
- Extra MBTA staff will be in the field to monitor service and report any issues immediately.
- Track personnel are deploying resources in the field to quickly repair any cracked or broken rails.
- The Signals Department will be checking switches and switch heaters to ensure the equipment is functioning properly.
- The MBTA will pre-stage extra buses along subway lines in the event supplemental service is necessary.
“Despite our hard work, MBTA services will be adversely affected when key mechanical components and other pieces of equipment are subjected to icy conditions and/or frigid temperatures,” the MBTA said.
“It’s for these reasons that delays of varying degrees will be unavoidable. Customers are strongly advised to plan for extra travel time and to check mbta.com before starting their commutes.”
Commuters can check mbta.com/winter for up-to-date information on delays