SEPTA is a failure

I’m going to rant. I’ve just taken a red eye from SFO to PHL that arrived early and waited a half-hour to grab the 6:11 train home. Except that that train never came. And there was no message on the monitor at the track that anything was late. Normally things are on time coming from PHL. After waiting a few extra minutes, I called SEPTA and it took them several minutes to tell me that they think the train is 12 minutes late. By then, it was actually 20 minutes late with no indication the next train would even arrive, let alone be on time. So I’m now in a taxi on the Schuylkill Expressway for an expensive ride home after spending an extra hour at the airport waiting for a train that never came.

I’m angry because I support mass transit. I take trains all the time and have lived with the various delays and other assorted nonsense. But it’s not raining. There are no leaves on the tracks to make it slick and require the trains to slow down. At the very least, there should be communication. The overhead monitors should actually be accurate and state if a train is late or, at worst, cancelled. Instead, everyone waiting for the train is really waiting for Godot, and at this rate, I have more confidence Godot will arrive at PHL than the scheduled SEPTA train. The fact that the customer service person at SEPTA couldn’t find out if the trains were running, and how late they really were, doesn’t give me confidence. It doesn’t have to be this way. It doesn’t take a fascist dictator like Mussolini to make trains run on time, nor should it take much to at least communicate delays or cancellations in a timely and accurate fashion.