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Pace831

How COVID-19 affects transit

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17 hours ago, Pace831 said:

TL;DR: aside from 1 inbound UPN train from Highland Park and 1 inbound UPNW train from Harvard, both in the morning, every train has had 50 or less riders. Those two inbound trains had between 50-100 riders.
 

All this leads me to believe that Metra should’ve changed the parameters to better reflect the actual passenger count, because they could’ve otherwise just said “all trains in the system are running with 50 or fewer passengers at almost all times”

I would’ve also liked to see actual ridership numbers to see how certain lines are doing compared to the usual (in particular the ME, RI & BNSF)

EDIT: This also somewhat feels like a less than transparent attempt to say “hey, all our services are adhering to social distancing, etc)

EDIT 2: 50 or fewer riders per car

Edited by NewFlyerMCI
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20 minutes ago, NewFlyerMCI said:

All this leads me to believe that Metra should’ve changed the parameters to better reflect the actual passenger count, because they could’ve otherwise just said “all trains in the system are running with 50 or fewer passengers at almost all times”

It is better to keep the parameters the same for consistency as ridership increases. Not only is that easier for passengers to understand, but it prevents them from being accused of data manipulation. It will be interesting to see how they alter the schedules if any trains start to get too crowded.

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12 hours ago, NewFlyerMCI said:

TL;DR: aside from 1 inbound UPN train from Highland Park and 1 inbound UPNW train from Harvard, both in the morning, every train has had 50 or less riders. Those two inbound trains had between 50-100 riders.

Just a small correction:  I think the statistics in those charts are riders per car, not riders per train.

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21 minutes ago, Smolensk said:

Just a small correction:  I think the statistics in those charts are riders per car, not riders per train.

I think not.  Not all cars are available on every train, but they have to have more cars open to encourage social distancing.  I believe the counts reflect the number of people on the train 

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40 minutes ago, artthouwill said:

I think not.  Not all cars are available on every train, but they have to have more cars open to encourage social distancing.  I believe the counts reflect the number of people on the train 

From the web page:

"Metra is monitoring the level of crowding on each train by calculating the average number of riders per train car over a five-day period."

Then further down on the page the green bar says: "Low ridership < 50 riders per car."

The yellow bar says "Some ridership 50 - 70 riders per car."

The orange bar says "Moderate ridership 70 - 100 riders per car."

The red bar says "High ridership 100+ riders per car."

 

And if you click on the individual charts (like this chart for the BNSF line), there is a color-coded key at the bottom of each page that also says "per car."

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2 hours ago, artthouwill said:

I think not.  Not all cars are available on every train, but they have to have more cars open to encourage social distancing.  I believe the counts reflect the number of people on the train 

This was not the case on some of the ME trains I’ve taken or the MDW train I took the other day. In defense of the MDW train, it was an AM outbound, but the full train was not available, only the first two cars

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13 minutes ago, NewFlyerMCI said:

This was not the case on some of the ME trains I’ve taken or the MDW train I took the other day. In defense of the MDW train, it was an AM outbound, but the full train was not available, only the first two cars

ME is a different operation than the diesel Lines.  I don't know the load factor for outbound MDW trains pre and post pandemic.  It sounds like two open cars is normal, but would the passenger load have been considered normal prepandemic or crowded now?

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7 hours ago, artthouwill said:

ME is a different operation than the diesel Lines.  I don't know the load factor for outbound MDW trains pre and post pandemic.  It sounds like two open cars is normal, but would the passenger load have been considered normal prepandemic or crowded now?

That’s why I added the status of the trip. To be fair, I’m not sure if there would’ve been more people pre-pandemic. I saw maybe ~20 people total tops, everyone bar 1 person boarded at CUS (that 1 got on at Elmwood Park?) and only about 3-5 (myself included) got off at Elgin. MDW doesn’t really travel thru areas conducive to a reverse commute, especially at the time I left (10:30a), so I’m entirely willing to believe that the pandemic didn’t have a noticeable change on what the passenger count would’ve been normally 

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