After a 13 year old Queens boy running across LIRR tracks was killed by a train, there had been much criticism about the poor state of the fences that surround the tracks. Yesterday, the MTA announced it would try to address track access issues. The MTA will survey tracks and try to "fix the most glaring deficiencies in a system requiring nearly 3,000 miles of fencing to secure," according to Newsday. MTA Executive Director Elliot Sander said, "Unfortunately we can't fence the entire system. It's a massive system. But we're going to be looking for those places that are most sensitive in a way we have not done before."
Representative Anthony Weiner got $500,000 in federal funds for the MTA's efforts, and also said he would propose a law in honor of 13 year old Ari Kraft, who was killed - the law would provide money to states to fix broken fencing around tracks. Kraft had been tagging signal boxes along the LIRR with friends when he was hit. His family is thinking about suing the LIRR.
What's interesting is that the MTA has responded so quickly, relatively speaking. We wonder if it's because Sander's there now. When 18 year old Natalie Smead died after falling through the LIRR platform gap last year, the MTA blamed Smead. This year, the LIRR is fixing gaps.