Winter increases risk of slip-and-fall, accidents on MBTA property

Our Boston personal injury lawyers know busy commuter systems increase your risk of slip and fall injuries during winter months. We have noted on earlier posts to our Boston Personal Injury Attorney Blog issues regarding the MBTA.

The Boston Globe reports the brutal winter is taking a heavy toll on commuters, the Department of Transportation and the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority. Bitter cold temperatures and high snow totals have taken their toll on the state’s snow removal budget, the T, and the roadways.
Eight big storms have averaged 34 hours of plowing or salting apiece, and 6 highway districts needed trucks to remove snow or ice on at least 18 occasions. District 1 (Western Massachusetts) had trucks go out 24 times and District 3 (which has 77 communities including state roads in Worcester and Framingham) needed trucks 31 times.

Due to heavy snowfall the roofs on 4 of Massachusetts’ 140 salt barns have collapsed. These barns are used to store the salt around the state for use on roadways. So far $75 million has already been spent and another $10.9 million has been billed. The cost to fix the salt barns has not been added to these amounts. Considering the fact that the state is $22.5 million over budget for snow removal, the Department of Transportation will need help from lawmakers to get through the rest of the winter.

On the T, disruptions and delays were abundant on the Red and Orange Lines. It could be due to their aging cars, all cars on the Orange Line were bought in 1979 and about 1/3 of the Red Line cars were bought in 1969. A useful life for one of these cars is 25 years according to the manufacturer. The 5- and 6-year-old cars on the Blue Line have performed well in the tough winter conditions.

A review of all Red and Orange Line cars will be conducted to see what can be done to keep them in service-ready condition.

The aging commuter rail system has had its share of snow-related track problems and breakdowns, causing headaches to thousands of commuters. Though two new surplus locomotives arrived two weeks ago, it is little help for a fleet of 80 locomotives and 400-plus coaches that are 30+ years old. At a cost of $300+ million the delivery of 20 locomotives and 75 coaches is over a year away.

Analysts and officials believe it will take about $3 billion to address the T replacement, vehicle and infrastructure maintenance needs.

If you have been injured, contact Massachusetts Injury Attorney Jeffrey S. Glassman for a free and confidential appointment to discuss your rights. Call (617) 777-7777.

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