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Now the MTA and the Transport Workers Union Are Fighting Over an Opossum

NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 29: Commuters wait for the subway August 29, 2011 in New York City. One day after Hurricane Irene hit New York the mass transit system, including subways and buses, began moving again in a limited capacity in time for Monday's rush hour. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
Photo: Joe Raedle/2011 Getty Images

A motorman on a Coney Island-bound D train managed to save an animal’s life on Sunday night, but somehow this good deed has been twisted into another battle between the MTA and Transport Workers Union Local 100. The Daily News reports that the driver stopped the train before hitting an opossum, which then froze on the tracks, leading the MTA to reroute several trains. “The TA turned trains, disrupting service for hundreds, if not thousands of riders, rather than risk hurting (an opossum),” declared Steve Downs, a union official. “But they think having trains enter stations more slowly to avoid killing people who might be on the roadbed would be too disruptive.”

The MTA claims the call for slower trains is just a negotiating tactic, and says the practice would cause dangerous overcrowding on platforms. “The MTA’s top priority is always safety — the safety of our customers, the safety of our employees and even the safety of animals,” said MTA spokesman Adam Lisberg. Reports of subway miracles are too rare these days — can’t we just enjoy this?

MTA and Union Are Fighting Over an Opossum