On Friday 3/10, the MBTA held a press conference to announce the implementation of widespread speed restrictions following an inspection by the Department of Public Utilities that reportedly identified problems on a stretch of Red Line track between Ashmont and Savin Hill stations. The MBTA made the decision to implement speed restrictions across all subway lines because they could not verify which parts of the system were safe for full-speed travel due to reported documentation gaps and inconsistencies.
On Thursday 3/16, the MBTA announced they had lifted global speed restriction on the Mattapan trolley while maintaining the limits on the Green Line.
On Friday 3/17, MBTA Interim General Manager Jeff Gonneville held a press conference, explaining that the MBTA had lifted global speed restrictions on the Red, Orange, and Blue Lines and the Mattapan Trolley and anticipates lifting the global speed restrictions on the Green Line by Saturday morning. The Interim General Manager also stated that a full, complete, and independent investigation is underway to determine the cause of the documentation gaps and inconsistences and process breakdown.
On Sunday 3/19, the MBTA announced they had lifted the global speed restriction on the Green Line. Targeted block speed restrictions of 10-25 miles per hour are now in effect on the Green, Red, Orange, Blue, and Mattapan Lines. The T continues to encourage riders to plan for delays and additional travel time.
The MBTA is encouraging Orange and Red Line riders to use the commuter rail while block speed restrictions are in place. They are allowing riders to use their CharlieCard to get on the commuter rail at the following stations: JFK/UMass, Quincy Center, Braintree, Porter Square, Back Bay, Ruggles, Forest Hills, Malden Center, and Oak Grove. For passengers traveling through North Station, a customer service agent will let them through the gates. Additionally, the MBTA has developed a Rider’s Guide that details commuter rail alternatives for commuter rail service for Orange and Red Line riders.
While we appreciate the state's enhanced safety auditing protocols and improved transparency, we remain deeply concerned by the safety and state of good repair issues that continue to plague the system. Moving forward, we expect the T to provide frequent updates on progress toward lifting the speed restrictions and investigating the troubling documentation gaps and inconsistencies. We have requested a meeting with Interim General Manager Jeff Gonneville to discuss these issues.