Mark Segraves and Adam Tuss over at WTOP.com filed a report this morning covering the fact that since 2004, Metro bus and train operators have been cited over 4,000 times for endangering the lives of their passengers. Most of the incidents involve illegal behavior including speeding in residential neighborhoods, running red lights and hitting cars, people, bicycles and wheelchairs. (Update: WTOP has informed me that this will be a week-long series with reports from both Mark and Adam through Thursday.)
Shocking? To most of us, probably not. Metro downplays the numbers, citing that on an average day, 1,200 buses cover 1,500 square miles and provide 20 hours of service. I can forgive the bad eggs that happen along; it’s a sad fact of life that no service or system is perfect. It’s hardly surprising to anyone that one of the more common complaints in the report is rude and discourteous behavior by Metro employees to customers, including profanity and grabbing people.
What is incredible about the report is some of the infractions that operators have been cited for. Slewing the bus around corners hard enough to tip wheelchairs over? Leaving passengers in bus lots or trains after closing? Urinating inside the bus?
Seriously, WMATA, WTF?