By Matt Ferremi
After six people were killed in the Metro-North train crash that occurred in Valhalla, New York on Feb. 3. There are some people who are questioning the safety of public transportation, and there are some people who still feel safe using it.
The crash occurred at 6:30 pm when 49-year old Ellen Schaeffer Brody’s SUV was beyond the crossing gate on the tracks according to eyewitnesses. It was reported in an article by lohud.com that the driver behind Brody named Rick Hope stated that if Brody remained where she was. “The train would have most likely struck a glancing blow, most likely only damaging the front bumper,” Hope said in the article. Instead of going backwards, Brody went forward. Hope also said in the article that “There was a terrible crunching sound, and just like that, the car was gone.” Hope also said that her car ”Disappeared. It happened instantly. There’s no way she could have known what hit her.” The train then approached the SUV and Brody was killed instantly as well as five people on the train. It has been reported that the lead train caught fire which led to the death of the five passengers.
In the aftermath of this accident, there have been some people who feel that there should be more safety precautions surrounding the train tracks and other types of public transportation. Some suggestions include increasing the amount of time the flashing red lights come up before the train comes. While others feel the safety precautions on the train tracks and other forms of public transportation are fine the way they are, and that this crash was just a tragic accident that could have been avoided.
There are some students on the Ammerman campus that rely on public transportation or have relied on it in the past. Second-year student Steve Rourke is a Radio and Television Production major. Rourke has used public transportation to get to class. When asked if he felt safe using public transportation, Rourke said “Yes for the most part it was safe, you would have the occasional bumpy ride but other than that, I felt safe taking the bus.” What Rourke would like to see changed is “The only thing is the buses need to come on time, I sometimes would stand for the longest time. When you’re trying to get to a class on time and the bus shows up late, it’s tough to explain that to a professor.”
Justin Dibona is a former student who used to attend the Ammerman campus. He took the bus on occasion when he was a student and still does take it to work on occasions. When talking about his experience taking the bus, he said that “There was no safety concerns for me while riding the bus. I just didn’t like it because I rather be in a car because it’s more convenient.” When asked if he would change anything safety wise. Dibona said, “No, there really is nothing to add. The Metro North crash was a tragic incident but I think it could have been avoided. I think the woman (Brody) unfortunately panicked, which is what caused the accident.”
The crash is still being investigated. Even though this crash took place, people are still willing to take public transportation and still feel safe taking it.