The coronavirus hit the New York transportation system, the epicenter of the pandemic in the United States, with 41 deceased employees and more than 6,000 in isolation, which impacted the essential service on which these health days or emergencies, local media reported Wednesday.
The chief executive of the Metropolitan Transport Authority (MTA), which covers the subway, the suburban train and buses, Patrick Foye, said this morning on the New York radio station WCBS 880 that 41 employees have died and some 1,500 have tested positive in the test, including himself, and assured that steps are being taken to protect those who work.
However, the shortage of workers is causing delays and cancellations in a system whose service was reduced by 25% at the end of March due to the health crisis, which generates overcrowding problems in some wagons and stations, making it difficult in turn social required by the authorities, collects The New York Times.
What about transportation?
According to the newspaper, which quotes MTA union sources, the management did not do enough to protect its workers and made late decisions based on a corporate plan to face a pandemic, to the point where some of them brought from home their masks, disinfectants, or tape to mark separations between employees and travellers.
Stay at home
New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo has ordered all non-essential workers to stay home and asked that they not take public transportation in order to contain the spread of the pathogen, so the number of travellers has plummeted, up to 92% on the city’s subway.
It is now mostly used by health and emergency workers, who despite frequent cleaning and disinfection of wagons fear becoming “virus vectors” due to the overcrowding they face going to their workplaces, as expressed by a medical social worker, Allie Ebben, who has immunocompromised patients.
Foye indicated that the MTA has had “episodic” overcrowding problems and assured that there are “enough provisions” to protect its employees daily and weekly with masks, gloves and other protective clothing that it has been distributing since March 1, and plans to maintain “as long as the pandemic continues.”
He also warned that the transportation system is going to have financial problems and, despite the 4,000 million dollars it has recently received from federal funds, “will need additional financing” because the economic “recovery” of the city and the state “depends on a healthy MTA.”