NYPD called out for blocking the exits at Yankee StadiumBy
Barriers, bottom left, are used to stop fare jumpers and emergency exiters alike. (Photo courtesy of flickr user The Sean)
Remember when Andy Van Slyke got busted for fare-jumping at Yankee Stadium two weeks ago? Well, the New York City Transit Police’s efforts at catching Yankee Stadium fare jumpers just landed them in some hot water.
The ever-vigilant New York Post noticed that the police barriers in place at Yankee Stadium to stop fare jumpers on the 4 platform were blocking three of the five emergency exits. Rupert Murdoch’s rag would have none of that. Transit Reporter Jeremy Olshan has the story:
At the busy Yankee Stadium No. 4 subway stop, three out of the five emergency exits have been routinely blocked with metal barricades.
Station agents and police assigned to the 161st Street-River Avenue stop said the barriers were put in to deter passengers from using the gates for non-emergency purposes or to beat the fare…Two of the three exits on the mezzanine were barricaded, and one downstairs at the B and D entrance also had a handwritten sign that read: “Please use other exit.”
The MTA employers were as helpful as they usually are. “People are people, they’re going to try to beat the fare,” a station agent said to Olshan. “I don’t know who put up the barricades, but it’s not my job to move them.”
Bronx Borough President Adolfo Carrion expressed the necessary outrage as this bit of MTA absurdity, and supposedly, the barriers have since been moved. While I’ll be able to confirm that tonight, I have to think that the Post may be making a mountain out of a mole hill here. For a few minutes while the cops monitor the turnstiles — always replete with fare-jumpers after baseball games — some of the emergency exits can be blocked.
As long as they’re unblocked in a timely fashion, I’ll take the increased fare monitoring. The ramped-up police presence should secure the rest of us in case of an emergency anyway.