Tuesday, October 23, 2012
Last night was the beginning of the Eighth Avenue line's fourth and final round of FASTRACK for this year. FASTRACK is MTA New York City Transit's ambitious maintenance program that involves the partial closure of a subway line to train service on four consecutive nights for seven continuous hours (10 p.m. to 5 a.m.). With no trains running along the lines from 59 St-Columbus Circle to Jay St-MetroTech, Brooklyn, maintenance workers worked on and near the tracks without the need to stop work every few minutes while a train moves through the area. This is a safer work environment for employees, and a more efficient way to maintain and clean New York City's enormous subway system that runs around the clock.
More than 800 Transit employees were able to perform inspections and maintenance work in stations, on tracks, signals, switches and associated components. Work crews were able to replace rails and cross ties, and scrape track floors, resulting in the removal of dirt and debris. In subway stations, paintable areas not reachable during normal train operation were scraped, primed and painted. Workers were also able to clean lighting fixtures, change bulbs and repair platform edges while performing high-intensity station cleaning. These maintenance activities improve train performance and efficiency while also promoting a positive and pleasant station environment experience.
Key accomplishments from last night's maintenance effort include servicing eight switches and ten signals, and gathering and removing 1,275 bags of debris. In addition, 15,955 linear feet of track was scraped, and four running rails, 256 tie plates and five tie blocks were replaced. Track maintenance workers scraped and cleaned 210 linear feet of track under and around the third rail and corrected 242 third rail defects. Workers also repaired 15 square feet of benchwall (an extension of the station platform that is located in tunnels and used by maintenance workers for emergency egress), sealed 15 leaks, installed 300 linear feet of "no clearance signs" and 320 linear feet of handrail. Additionally, 300 linear feet of track trough, the space between the rails, was cleaned, 52 column tags were installed and 700 linear feet of the Cranberry Street Tunnel surfaces was power washed.
In the subway stations environment, customer and employee safety was a top priority as 12 platform edge signs and 110 tunnel lights were replaced and 120 square feet of rubbing board, the edge of the platform that is adjacent to the side of train, was repaired. Also, 12 fire extinguishers were inspected and the picture was optimized on 12 Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) monitors and nine cameras, and two cameras were replaced. Two elevators also received preventative maintenance.
How this impacts service?
Reliable service - service you can depend on to get you to where you need to go when you need to get there - requires regularly scheduled maintenance to critical components you never see. Pumps, signals, track, and power are just some of the vital system equipment we are focusing on so that we can continue providing our riders with train service that is safe and reliable.
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