Wednesday, January 29, 2020

A few bed bugs have conquered the control tower at the 71st/Continental Ave Station

NY Daily News 

A pesky bed bug infestation at a key subway control tower in Queens isn’t going away — and the bloodsuckers could chew up service for the second time in less than week.

More bed bugs were discovered at the facility Monday, five days after the space was shut down during rush hour to be fumigated — a move that caused major delays for thousands of riders across nine different subway lines.

Metropolitan Transportation Authority spokesman Tim Minton said “one bug” was spotted at the Continental Master Control Tower in Forest Hills on Monday — and that exterminators would again be brought in to fumigate the facility after the evening rush.

“It is conceivable that this bug originated somewhere other than these premises,” said Minton. “We cannot conclude and we do not conclude that the source was internal.”

But transit workers at the tower have complained for weeks about bed bugs in the facility. Union officials and employees with knowledge of the situation charged bosses didn’t take the problem seriously.

An MTA employee with direct knowledge of the situation accused transit officials of a coverup, and said a general superintendent was to blame for the ongoing infestation.

Frank Jezycki, NYC Transit’s chief operating officer for subways, admitted to the Daily News that an exterminator verified the presence of bed bugs at the tower on Jan. 8 and treated the facility.

Jezycki said a manager then identified more bed bugs on Jan. 22 — but the MTA’s exterminator showed up quicker than usual.

Jezycki said said the agency’s exterminator, Abalon Pest Control, has a 24-hour window to respond to complaints, but the company’s worker arrived at the tower just before rush hour, which ended up causing serious headaches for riders.

“There was a truck down the block, a guy says he’s here to treat,” said Jezycki. “We had folks there that put together a contingency plan for service.”

That contingency plan was a nightmare.

Operators who work in the infested control tower direct train traffic through a key relay switch on the E, F, M and R lines.

Crews were unable to direct trains through a crucial interlocking while the building was fumigated last Wednesday, and the lapse caused 236 trains to be delayed and another 117 to be canceled, according to an MTA incident report obtained by The News.

Eric Loegel, vice president of rapid transit operations at Transport Workers Union Local 100, said gripes that the bed bugs may have been living in a set of cloth chairs at the facility went ignored by a tower manager.

There was also this little tidbit closing the Gothamist post on this latest transit disgrace:

Following last week's outbreak, NYC Transit President Andy Byford issued a statement apologizing to customers affected by the delays and assuring employees that they were working to ensure their safety. A few hours later, he announced his resignation.

I mentioned on the Twitter a few times that this was the final straw that caused Byford to snap and say goodbye to all that. Among the myriad other things I point out on Impunity City.


Mick Jagger said...

Obviously some well groomed hygienic MTA employee is bringing them in from home.

Where’s Roscoe?!?!

Anonymous said...

Delays due to a "sick passenger".

Anonymous said...

Where's the redundancy? If this 'tower' has to be closed for any reason - not just fumigation, but an accident, a malfunction, someone misplaced the keys - there's no way to run it out of another or a central location?

Anonymous said...

I teach in a public school in Queens. We find bed bugs in classrooms all the time. No one does a thing about it. But a few bugs in a control room cause an entire subway line to shut down?

Julie B. said...

People think bedbugs come from filth. So not true. They feed on blood--not food, moisture or dirt. The problem stems from people willing to co-exist with them in their homes. They will take over your homes unless you kill all of them and their eggs. It's has to be an all or nothing assault. If not they will occupy your clothing and you will deposit them everywhere you go.

Anonymous said...

What? No Crabs,Scabs or scurvy

Anonymous said...

Ah, now we know what Bret Stephens does in his spare time...

Anonymous said...

>We find bed bugs in classrooms all the time. No one does a thing about it.

Students don't have a union, transit workers do.

Anonymous said...

Another thank you to the Dems and their open boarders. Back in the day we used to decorate our apartments with 'Early Sidewalk' and 'Park Avenue Discard' - now don't want to sit on a bus or train next to the wall - look at all the crud in the crevice.

Small price to pay for the joys of identity politics and trashing our culture for pandering to third world voting blocks. Eh?

I'd exchange Vivaldi for Salsa any day of the week, how about you?

Anonymous said...

Students don't have a union, transit workers do.

And we get to pay for it, just sayin...

Anonymous said...

Obviously it is Donald Trump's fault.