Wondering why your above-ground subway commute has slowed lately? It’s the season that’s the reason.
Straphangers should leaf a little extra time for commuting now that fall is in full swing — the Metropolitan Transportation Authority is running elevated and above-ground trains slower because fallen leaves make the tracks slippery, officials said.
“When the leaves fall, they are crushed by the train wheels leaving behind an oily residue on the rail,” said agency spokesman Kevin Ortiz. “This oily substance creates a lack of rail adhesion or slippery rail, which makes it difficult for the train operators to come to a stop when entering stations.”
Special trains also lay down a sand-filled gel on rails at night to give morning commuter cars a little more grip, he said.
But many seasoned straphangers had no idea the foliage was foiling their commutes.
“It’s been creeping really slowly — I thought it was because of construction” said Cassandra Brown, who takes the B and Q trains from Kings Highway to Downtown.for work every day.
Operators drive slower until around mid-December, Ortiz said.