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Cuomo gets on the tracks in hands-on tour of subway power system

Cuomo toured the subway power system yesterday, announcing Public Service Commission demands that Con Edison take action now.
(Photo by MTAPhotos via Flickr)
(Photo by MTAPhotos via Flickr)

While Gov. Andrew Cuomo is not typically spotted riding the subways, yesterday he got onto the tracks. Straphangers were surprised to look out from the windows of the D train and see the governor in the tunnels in a hands-on look at the failing power systems.

During his visit, he announced that the Public Service Commission (PSC) demanded that Con Edison perform a total update of the system including new malfunction sensors, conductors and smart meters.

"To repair the MTA, we must also focus on the services that the MTA relies upon,” Cuomo said, according to a press release. "The number one necessity is a reliable power supply. That must be provided by Con Edison. Over the years, there have been Band Aids placed all over the system. We need to fundamentally upgrade the entire system."

More than a staggering 32,000 service disruptions and delays have been caused by power problems over the past year, leaving riders frustrated and with little confidence left in the city’s transit.

Cuomo’s tour took a look at the inner workings of the system, stopping at one room of installations from 1980 where the style of technology dated back to 1950, CBS2 reported. Now he says it’s time for change, and the PSC is working alongside him to make it happen.

Commission Chair John B. Rhodes vowed to stay on task, stating in a press release, "We will hold Con Edison accountable to provide the necessary resources and its full cooperation to ensuring the remediation, maintenance and repair of the electricity services provided to the MTA."