MTA Press Releases

Press Release
March 25, 2008
MTA NYC Transit's Response to Straphangers' Survey on Subway Car Cleanliness

While keeping a fleet of 6,200 subway cars spotlessly clean is a difficult challenge, we are pleased to note that the Straphangers Campaign has recognized our efforts along the 7 and L, the two lines that have been the focus of a shift in management philosophy that places a high priority on the customer concerns of cleanliness by making certain that cars are cleaned at both terminals.

NYC Transit, however, notes that the Straphangers' methodology differs slightly from that used during Transit's own in-house evaluations. Importantly, the survey time period is not comparable with NYC Transit's own Passenger Environment Survey (PES). Our surveys are conducted between 8 a.m. and 10 p.m. on weekdays, while the Straphangers' survey was performed during the a.m. rush, p.m. rush, evenings, overnights, and weekends.

As examples of contradictions in survey results, the E train continues to be the Straphangers' worst performing line (29%), while the L train is their best performing line (88%). In contrast, the M train is the worst performing PES line (70%) while the 3 train is the best performing line (97%). Although the Straphangers use the same standards as PES, the overall results demonstrate that these indicators are not comparable, given that the PES result was 87% versus 50% for the Straphangers.

"The disparities between the Straphangers Report and our in-house surveys notwithstanding, we are working diligently to provide the cleanest equipment for our customers that we possibly can," said Department of Subways Senior Vice President Steven Feil.

"Our decision to move to two-terminal cleaning along certain lines goes a long way towards achieving that goal. Providing a clean environment for our customers is one of MTA New York City Transit's top goals but our customers can help us out greatly, by properly disposing of their refuse," added Feil.