MTA to World: Look How Vulnerable Our Subway Is!


Because we know you read the USA Today as carefully as we do, we know you were, like us, a bit disturbed by the how-terrorists-can-destroy-the-subway-system primer printed, with no particular news peg, in yesterday’s colorful paper. Some of the cited details might sound familiar, but what stays with you after reading the piece is the sheer October-2001-grade hysteria of the quotes, all of which come from pretty high up. The city’s 600 miles of track are, in the words of Senator Chris Dodd, “ripe, easy targets.” All the costly security upgrades undertaken so far, says MTA preparedness chief Lewis Schiliro, amount to “incremental risk reduction,” which doesn’t sound good at all. None of the nation’s subway systems will be as safe as they should be, he gravely threatens, unless agencies like his get more federal money. Okay, then. Is the money coming? Yes and no: The Homeland Security Department is doling out a paltry $172 million for transit security this year — nationwide. William Morange, MTA’s security director, any words for the boys in D.C.? “Even if you don’t have the money, do the testing for us. Do something.” Schiliro, take us out on the up note! “The magnitude of the problem is almost incomprehensible.” Thanks.

Protecting NYC Subways an ‘Incomprehensible’ Task [USAT]