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C You Later

January 24th, 2005 · No Comments · NYC, Subway

As I’ve mentioned earlier, the MTA, in the interest of security, is considering banning photography by the public anywhere on MTA facilities. We can’t have people taping videos on the trains, or taking snapshots on the platforms, because apparently this is a huge risk.

Meanwhile, yesterday night, some homeless person, in an attempt to seek shelter from the weather, headed into a subway tunnel near Chambers Street and decided to build a fire. One thing led to another, and the fire spread, and next thing you know, hundreds of critical switching relays are up in flames.

The end result? “Millions of dollars” of damage, and the C line is effectively shut down, for perhaps years. Maybe three years, maybe five years. The A line is also severely crippled.

So, I know the MTA is especially tight for cash, especially now that they’ve got all this repair work to do, so the following advice is free:

Maybe spend less time worrying about banning cameras, and spend more time deploying a few cameras (and the people to watch them) of your own. Then you point those cameras on critical infrastructure areas and their approaches. And maybe, just maybe, put some fire detection and suppression equipment around all that essential but flammable electrical equipment.

Because if one homeless person can do millions of dollars in damage and shut down a whole line for five years, what the hell kind of damage could someone do deliberately?

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