NYC transit chief blames media for low subway ridership

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New York City transit chief Sarah Feinberg blamed the media Sunday for low subway ridership — claiming information retailers stoked fears about contracting COVID-19 on trains.

“[The subway system] was really ill-served by some of the early coverage of the pandemic,” mentioned Feinberg, the MTA’s interim transit president, in an interview with ABC 7, referencing information footage on the time of packed subway trains.

“So I think people started thinking, the last place I want to be is in a crowded subway car,” she mentioned.

Feinberg mentioned information exhibits that — regardless of greater than 28,000 COVID-19 deaths within the Big Apple over the previous year —  public transportation isn’t a sizzling spot for transmitting the virus.

 “Well, fast forward a year, there’s now been study after study that shows that the subway system, the transit system, not just in New York but really everywhere, is really not a place that’s vectoring the virus,” she instructed the station — with out referencing particular research.

Her feedback come as subway ridership in New York City plunged this month to roughly 70 % of that in February 2020 and as metropolis bus ridership dropped 50 %.

The plummet in straphangers additionally comes amid a string of subway assaults that left two homeless riders useless final week and numerous others injured.

Job loss can also be linked to the decline in riders — with greater than 550,000 New Yorkers shedding their jobs over the previous year and others switching to working remotely.

Transit officers together with Feinberg have additionally  made cuts to subway service strains such because the C and the F trains and scaled again hours over the previous year.

A examine commissioned by the company has predicted that subway ridership gained’t return to pre-COVID-19 ranges till at the least 2024.

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