May 15, 2009

Boston cell phone ban

Just a few days after my post about “The Texting Bus Driver From Texas” there has been another transit accident related to an operator and texting. The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) which operates bus, train, and subway were involved in an accident with a rail trolley rear ending another Green Line trolley.

A MBTA official has stated the operator, had been texting his girl friend at the time of the accident.  Forty-nine people were taken to hospital but none of the injuries were considered life threatening. The operator suffered a broken wrist in the crash.

As a result of the accident, MBTA has implemented a zero tolerance policy on bus, train, and subway operators caught using a cell phone, iPod, or paging device while on duty. The transit authority has gone one step further and will ban their drivers from keeping electronic devices with them in a pocket, knapsack or handbag while operating a Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority vehicles. If caught using any of these devices while on duty drivers face immediately suspension.

Breaking the rule by using any of the above devices will result in a month's suspension with a recommendation for dismissal, while merely carrying a phone will receive a 10-day suspension for a first offence.

Tough rules for tough circumstances.

Related Link:
MBTA unveils zero-tolerance cell phone policy

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