Thursday, January 05, 2012

Quiet Car Pilot begins in Conn.

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On Monday January 9, a pilot program introducing "quiet cars" on the New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority's Metro-North New Haven Line begins on select rush-hour trains.

The quiet car program, in which cell phone calls and loud conversations are prohibited, begins on a total of 18 AM and PM peak period trains for the comfort and convenience of New Haven Line rail commuters.

"Quiet cars have enjoyed great popularity and success elsewhere in the Northeast and it's time we brought them to Connecticut," said Connecticut Department of Transportation Commissioner James Redeker.

New printed train timetables show a "Q" to designate the trains with a quiet car. The quiet car will be the last car for trains going to Grand Central Terminal in the morning and the first car for trains leaving Grand Central in the evening.

The program will be voluntary in nature with customers self-monitoring. However conductors will issue "shh" cards to customers who are non-compliant.

In addition, announcements will be made informing and reminding customers of the location of the Quiet Car and its restrictions. The use of electronic devices in the Quiet Car will be prohibited including cell phones, iPods, DVD players, laptops, etc. unless the device can be used in a manner that does not create any noise. If headphones are used, they must be at a volume that cannot be heard by others.

Customers can converse in the Quiet Car but they must use subdued voices.

Metro-North, in conjunction with the Connecticut Department of Transportation, will conduct customer surveys to gauge feedback on the initiative in both states. If the response is favorable, the pilot may be expanded or become permanent later this year.

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