The consequences of the MTA layoffs just keep getting better. Whereas turnstiles used to get cleaned every day with alcohol-soaked cards, dirt and dust may start to build up now that many station agents won't be around to do the cleaning. And though an MTA spokeswoman told the Post the cleanings will now be the job of the station chiefs, union leaders upset at the layoffs are telling them it's not their job. But all the dirt could be hitting New Yorkers in the wallet.
Dirt-clogged MetroCard readers up the chances of errors that can rob straphangers of fares. A 2005 study showed that one out of four MetroCard swipes fails, and it happens more often in dirtier stations. To get the most out of your swipe, MTA spokesman Paul Fleuranges suggests swiping steadily and swift, "like a punch to the gut." Heed the advice, lest you get labeled a "Metrotard."