Articles Posted in MBTA Accident

Last month, an eight-year-old girl who was visiting Boston from out-of-state was injured in an escalator accident at an MBTA subway station. She was wearing a pair of Crocs which got stuck in the escalator. The girl’s father and an MBTA employee pounded on the emergency kill switch, but the escalator wouldn’t stop.

Fortunately, the escalator freed the girl at the bottom, but part of her foot was crushed. The accident occurred at the Aquarium stop in downtown Boston. The girl’s parents question the safety of the MBTA, which officials says that parents should keep a close eye on children.

Last year, an 82-year-old woman died after being strangled in an MBTA escalator accident.

On Monday afternoon, a 27-year-old Billerica man died after being hit by a commuter rail train in Wilmington. Authorities suspended commuter rail service between Anderson RTC and North Billerica stations following the train crash. Shuttle buses transported passengers between stations during the mid-afternoon.

The tracks under the Route 129 bridge separate a residential area from shops and restaurants. Residents say many pedestrians use that area as a shortcut and that it could be a safety concern.

The fatal train accident remains under investigation. MBTA officials did not release the name of the victim pending notification of his family.

Source: Billerica man killed by MBTA train in Wilmington, Lowell Sun, July 13, 2010 Continue reading

Earlier this year, a trolley crash on the Green Line injured several Boston College students riding in a Jeep Grand Cherokee. At the time, the MBTA said it would hold the students responsible for the accident.

However, investigators determined that the trolley driver was speeding and that the Cherokee was trying to make a legal U-turn when it was hit by the trolley. According to the MBTA General Manager, the trolley was approaching 35 mph in a 10 mph zone. The trolley was suspended for 10 days.

No criminal charges have been filed in connection with the MBTA accident, but the students riding in the Cherokee were cited for being in a vehicle with open containers of alcohol.

Source: MBTA says driver in Green Line trolley crash going too fast, Boston Herald, June 25, 2010 Continue reading

Our MBTA accident attorneys have recently learned that the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority plans to close a loophole that had allowed operators on the Orange, Red, and Blue lines to maneuver subway trains without a driver’s license. Currently, driver’s licenses are only required for Green Line and bus drivers, because those vehicles operate at least in part on public streets.

The MBTA’s General Manager said it’s unusual for a T operator to not have a driver’s license, but the new policy will make it a requirement for future hires. The new requirement will also impact T employees because it means their license status will be reviewed by the Registry of Motor Vehicles.

Governor Deval Patrick ordered a review of all MBTA hiring after a 2009 trolley accident on the Green Line.

Source: MBTA expanding its driver’s license requirement, Boston Globe, June 19, 2010 Continue reading

Just over a year has passed since the May 8 trolley crash that injured 62 passengers and caused an estimated $9 million in equipment damage. The T operator who ran through yellow and red lights as he was text messaging was dismissed by the MBTA and faces trial next October. In addition, the MBTA has disciplined 18 workers for using or carrying cell phones on the job as part of the text messaging ban that followed swiftly on the heels of the MBTA accident. Ten of those workers were fired.

In contrast to the MBTA’s quick reaction, the writer of a Boston Globe article points out that the Massachusetts House and Senate have been slower to pass a texting ban for Massachusetts drivers. The Senate is requiring that drivers age 75 and older undergo medical screenings to maintain their driver’s licenses. On the House side, the bill is hung up over a provision that mandate handsfree cell phones.

However, the House Speaker assured the writer that the bill will pass before the sessions ends at the end of July.

Source: 18 T operators punished under year-old texting ban, Boston Globe, May 7, 2010 Continue reading

On Thursday, a three-alarm electrical fire on the tracks north of Downtown Crossing station in Boston send at least 17 MBTA passengers to local hospitals, where they were treated for smoke inhalation. According to one passenger, the train had pulled into the station and the subway operator quickly closed the doors after noticing the intense smoke in the station. The MBTA also evacuated several hundred passengers from the train and station.

In response to the fire, the MBTA shut down service on several subway lines. Buses replaced service between Broadway Station and Harvard Square on the Red Line, Arlington Station and North Station on the Green Line, and Back Bay Station and North Station on the Orange Line.

None of the passengers’ injuries appeared to be life-threatening.

Source: MBTA Fire Shuts Down Subways, Injures Dozens,, April 29, 2010 Continue reading

According to Massachusetts transit police, a Green Line trolley collided with a black Jeep Cherokee around midnight on Sunday. The Jeep Cherokee reportedly carried eight Boston College students, including four college athletes, all under the legal drinking age. Several of the students were injured and treated at St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center, but neither the driver of the trolley nor any of its passengers were hurt.

Police apparently searched the vehicle after the MBTA crash and found several open and unopened beer cans, as well as an unopened 1.75 liter bottle of vodka. They also found “flood smeared beer cans” at the site of the trolley accident.

The MBTA has announced that it will hold the students responsible for the SUV accident and wants them to pay repair costs. The eight students will also face citations for being minors in possession of alcohol.

Source: Four BC athletes to face alcohol charges after Green Line collision, The Boston Globe, April 26, 2010 Continue reading

Last week’s bus accident, which killed a 22-year-old bicyclist from Mission Hill, highlights the dangers of biking around congested city streets. It has also spurred Boston cyclists to fight for better safety measures.

Fatal bike accidents are not common in Massachusetts. In fact, the Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles reports that out of the more than 700 cycling accidents in 2008, only 10 resulted in fatalities.

However, cyclists say that drivers ignore them the road and that trolley tracks, particularly those on Huntington Avenue, where cyclists must pedal through traffic, pose a safety threat.

Transit authorities are still investigating the recent bus accident but say there is no evidence that the cyclist’s wheels got stuck in the trolley tracks.

Source: Cyclists urging safety measures after fatal crash, Boston Globe, April 9, 2010 Continue reading

The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority recently issued a press release announcing that MBTA bus drivers are actually safer than many motorists. According to the press release, the MBTA averaged 1.3 bus accidents for every hundred thousand miles last year, which represents a drop of more than 25% from 2007.

Although the MBTA has had several bus and subway accidents over the past year, most of the bus accidents (an estimated 83%) could not have been prevented by the bus driver. Those statistics found that an auto driver is four times more likely to make an error that results in a traffic accident with a bus than the MBTA bus driver is.

These findings could be attributed to several factors. The MBTA has recently added an operator recertification project and a zero-tolerance policy towards driving possessing mobile phones and electronic devices.

Source: MBTA Drivers Are Safer Than Many Motorists, Quincy Cove, March 1, 2010 Continue reading

Yesterday morning, two Green Line trains collided underground near Boylston Station. According to a spokeswoman for the MBTA, both trains were traveling about 5 miles per hour when the trolley crash occurred. Officials said there were no injuries, but police were investigating reports that two people suffered minor injuries.

One of the trains sustained minor damage and both trains were taken out of service. Roughly 200 people were on board the trains at the time of the MBTA accident, and they were evacuated. As is routine, the MBTA employees on the two trains will undergo drug and alcohol testing. MBTA officials say there is no indication of signal or equipment problems, nor do they believe that cell phones or other electronic devices were involved.

Trolley service was interrupted for about 15 minutes after the train collision.

Source: Police Investigate Green Line Crash,, February 9, 2010 Continue reading

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