on the Queens Boulevard Line
Wednesday, August 14, 2013
FASTRACK—MTA New York City Transit's ambitious maintenance program—continued for a third night along the Queens Boulevard Line. A three mile-long segment of the line was shutdown from 10 p.m. until 5 a.m. As a result, service was suspended in both directions at five local stations – 36 St, Steinway St, 46 St, Northern Blvd and 65 St – and trains ran express in both directions between Roosevelt Av and Queens Plaza and service ended early in Queens. This FASTRACK closure continues tonight and concludes at 5 a.m. Friday morning, August 16.
Suspending all train service on a subway line segment, on four consecutive nights for seven continuous hours, gives maintenance crews the chance to perform many tasks on or near the tracks without having to stop work every few minutes while a train moves through the area. This is a better work environment for employees and a far more efficient way to maintain and clean the nation’s largest rail transportation system.
With no local trains running along a portion of the normally bustling Queens Boulevard Line, which opened in 1933, hundreds of maintenance workers were able to inspect signals and switches, repair and replace track rails and cross ties, clean track floors, perform elevator and escalator repair work, repair water damage, clear drains, and clean stations. Maintenance crews were also able to clear the track-bed of debris and paint areas that are not reachable during normal train operation. In addition to high-intensity station cleaning, work crews were able to clean lighting fixtures, change bulbs, and repair platform edges providing a visible improvement to the station environment.
Achievement by the Numbers
Important achievements from last night’s maintenance agenda included correcting 50 third rail defects, scraping and cleaning 1,870 linear feet of track under and around the third rail, and cleaning 750 feet of track drain. With track safety in mind, workers replaced 107 feet of rail, 51 tie blocks and 225 track tie plates.
Keeping the subway’s physical structure in good condition and clearing the track of debris is vital to safe and reliable subway service as workers scraped 6,225 linear feet of track, removed 3,855 bags (12,800 pounds) of scrap and debris, inspected 8,535 linear feet of subway structure and repaired structural steel. Work crews also repaired or replaced 20 feet of handrail.
The FASTRACK project environment, introduced in 2012, experienced a dramatically lower employee accident rate. During last year’s FASTRACK work, the Lost Time Accident (LTA) rate per 100 Employees was 1.38 versus a rate of 2.42 during all other maintenance activities. An LTA is a job-related incident that results in the inability of an employee to perform their duties for at least one working day beyond the day of the incident.
How this impacts service?
Reliable service - service you can depend on to get you to where you need to go when you need to get there - requires regularly scheduled maintenance to the critical components you never see. FASTRACK is having a positive impact on service reliability as train delays on subway lines that have undergone FASTRACK maintenance have dropped 4.4% and track fires have declined by 50%. FASTRACK is improving employee safety and service reliability.
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