Thursday, December 18, 2014

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The Call Blog: The State Of The Subways; Cracking Down On Crime Underground

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Personally, I feel while an increase in arrests for minor crimes may make for an improved "quality of life," they don't make me feel safer. It's great to see more cops on the subways, but it should be for the reason of keeping people safe and deterring major crimes. And no matter the figures, as our Transit Reporter Jose Martinez said on our show tonight, straphangers have to be smart and vigilant to protect themselves from robberies and other crimes.

Arrests for major felonies are down in the New York City transit system by 10.8% this year compared to the year before. The police report 1,069 serious crimes were committed on subways and buses through the end of June, with the most taking place in Manhattan and Brooklyn. The downtrend comes as arrests for minor offenses, like littering and panhandling, are up dramatically.

This focus on improving the quality of life on mass transit comes as the Straphangers Campaign releases its annual "State of the Subways" report card. It ranks the 19 subway lines based on cleanliness, delays from mechanical breakdowns, and rush hour seating. The report finds the 7 line is the best, while the 2 train ranks last. What do you say?

How frequently do you see people evading fares, asking for money, littering, or committing more serious crimes on the subways and buses? How safe do you feel riding mass transit in New York City? Do you welcome more policing to improve the quality of life underground? Has it made a difference so far? What are the best and worst subway lines in the city?

Send your thoughts using the link above.

My favorite subway, when it was running, was the W (double U). It had new cars, was always clean, had informative signs and ran fast. It should be used as the standard all other lines must meet.

The panhandlers and singers don't bother me, but the pole dancers and acrobats should be removed.

Port Richmond

The subways and all public transportation is and always will be dangerous to travel on and the sad part is this is our life line. That's why for life of me other than being selfish for ones own good why they took away our private cab company's.
So now we need a judge - one man to decipher how the police department should handle stop and frisk. Meanwhile their courtrooms are nothing but a revolving door.
In the midst of all of this many get away with just a warning or a slap on the wrist and where is all of this going to end. Yesterday a talk show mentioned that DeBlasio didn't even know about the white flags on the bridge. For us to keep talking about the same subjects over and over again just how is all of this going to lead to us having a good quality of life in this city.
I would like to know what happens to the students that are caught bringing weapons to school? What type of offense would that be. Is that considered a warning after they confiscate the weapons. Do they not get written up for an offense of that kind which is serious to me.

Morris Park

Really have seen a big improvement.

Park Hill

People shouldn't evade the fare because it's taking money away from the MTA, they need the money to pay their wonderful employees, my buddies finally received their new contract if people evade the fare the MTA would have to raise the fare and we all have to pay more to get to where we're going I don't mind paying more as long as the service is good it's always good most of the time. The 7 train is the best, it would be even better when the contractors finish hooking up the CBTC signal system the trains would run faster and more trains would run because they have extra storage space for the new R188 trains when the trains are extended to the Javtis Center. The best PA systems are on the E F J L M N Q 2 4 5 6 and 7 because they have the brand new R 142,142A,143,160 A,160 B,179 and 188. More plain clothes cops should be on the trains to crackdown on the panhandlers, when people eat on the trains and buses they should put their trash in the garbage and teach their kids to do the same thing the rats smell the garbage that's why they be on the trains and station platforms.

Upper West Side

I agree with an influx of more cops underground cause I feel if you are a law abiding citizen its a positive if you are riding the subway

The more cops that the city concentrates underground will.discourage a criminal element from getting out of hand

Far Rockaway



The MTA should install the same ETA clocks that they have on the Platforms for oncoming trains at the street entrance levels, so people can see how much time they have before they go rushing down the stairs to hopefully catch the next train. It would make life so much better for train riders!


Some of the subway dancers have highly-developed gymnastic skills. Let's rid time square of the Elmos and Spidermans and let the dancers perform choreographed spectacles there.

Brooklyn Heights

I do wish that the police and social services would
work together to round up the homeless population and get
them out of the subways and into shelters where they can be
fed and washed. I'm sorry, but the subways should not be
their shelter and toilet.

Upper East Side

I ride the 2 line and its horrible. Way too crowded! I get in at the second stop in Brooklyn and can't get a seat during morning rush hour. I see people jump the turnstile almost everyday. They wait for you to go in the turnstile next to them, swipe their card that has no money on it, and jump over at the same time you go through so it's less noticeable.
Tickets should also be given out for littering!


Train the cops to run the trains. The labor savings would facilitate lower fares.

So-called “broken Windows” tactics are nothing but a make-work strategy that makes the police appear to be doing something.

As long as prohibition is in effect, the police force will be plagued by corruption, and brutality..


I met someone recently who commutes from Buffalo via plane and it takes her less time than me to take the E from Queens Plaza to Kew Gardens.

I wish I could do my job as poorly as the MTA and get to keep it.

Kew Gardens

I am pleased to know that the E train is one of the best trains on the list. For the most part, i feel safe riding the subways but yeah without question the more policing there is in subways and also buses, the less crime that will take place. The most common offenses i have seen are either panhandling or evading fares again with more policing less of those will occur.


Sleeping on the train isn't the problem its when you lie down on across the seat that is selfish and inconsiderate of other passengers. the quality of life issues do matter its that new yorkers hate being told any thing at all no matter if its a cop or another citzen.


Never mind the small violations. What I find appalling are people who don’t know how to behave on the trains. They don’t allow boarding passengers to exit the cars before rushing on. They block the doors and refuse to move. It’s worse than panhandling. Someone needs to educate these oafs on how to behave in public.

Brooklyn Heights

Best advice I can give to the people: Everyone wants to crowd in on the very first train that comes into the station. If people gave themselves more travel time they should take the 2nd or 3rd train that comes in and they may have a more comfortable ride.

I used to live in the South Bronx from 1995 to 2009 off the # 2/5 train (then moved to Staten Island in 2009). The 2/5 wasn't that bad at that time, but then the population was not so large either.


As a person who worked for NYPD in Brooklyn Central Booking for 27 years, you wouldn’t believe the idiots who jump the turnstile & have hundreds of dollars in their pocket & a gun. Also the police are making arrest of the low crimes because those people have warrants.

Red Hook

Instead of spending billions on a very short 2nd Ave line, the money should have been spent on new cars and stations.


The number 5 train is the best in the subway system. The 7, C, R trains have improved, and the E line is the worst because there is homeless people in every car stinking up the entire train.


I ride the A train everyday from Grant Avenue in Brooklyn to west 34th street. The train is always slow, packed and dirty. The cars floors are usually littered with juice, coffee or whatever. They need to hire people to clean the trains and come up with better PA system, you can never hear what the hell is going on. As far as the police goes everybody wanted Stop and Frisk to go away and this is what you get especially in the subways.


Subway's main problem is all the pigs who are eating---including full meals in plastic trays which are often left on the trains. No food should be permitted on the subways. They often claim they could not enforce this. People would stop even if randomly enforced. Would cut the litter and rodent problem.

Washington DC permits no eating on metro and commuter rails and they are much cleaner.


It seems like people who are fortunate or part of the working class just want the poor to disappear. Remember there are no jobs; I am sure people would pay if they had the money. Who would risk going to jail for $2.50 or $2.25? We have many people who use the trains for shelter.such as the mentally ill. We have to fix our social program to help those who are without. The poor has to live also.

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