Tuesday, April 1, 2008

it was so much worse than they said

For the second day in a row, I got to work at 10. Today was through no fault of my own.

I woke up and then got up about 15 minutes early. Thank gawd I did.

At 6:30, I checked out the train advisories after hearing of an inbound delay from a crash earlier in the morning. I found out that no trains were running between downtown and Evanston (first suburb north of Chicago). Trains were running between Evanston and the North Shore suburbs, which meant I'd have to go to Evanston to get on the train. This adds extra travel time of close to half an hour because we're half a mile off the L and because it would take 2 L trains to get up there. I called H to let her know what was going on, and we agreed to meet at the Davis Street station.

The train we normally take departs Davis at 7:50. I arrived at 7:40, and H made it about five minutes later. Several southbound trains made it past as a community of stranded northbound travelers began to form. Apparently, Metra decided to not (or to at least stop) turning trains around at Davis since they were able to open one track to run through the city and wanted to get the rush our commuters in.

Unfortunately, this left us reverse commuters stranded.

We finally left Davis sometime around 8:30. At that point, our northbound train had been sitting south of Clyborn Station for 55 minutes, according to the announcement, to let the southbound trains through.

Some people stayed, I guess. Others turned around and went home. H and I had coffee and croissants and waited for a prof friend we were able to reach, who was sweet enough to come pick us up and take us with her to campus. (She, too, would have been taking the train.)

I missed the most important thing I had on my calendar, a 9:00 collaborative meeting with a student and staff from the Counseling Center. I was at least able to call and let Counseling know what was going on and what my take on things is.

I'll be interested to read Tim's blog on the event, as it turns out he was on that train at Clyborun, which was stopped for 90 minutes.

And, after all of this, the Tribune doesn't even have updated information about this shitty, shitty travel day. Their last update is from 8:25.
Metra's UP North Line resumes service after fatality


8:25 AM CDT, April 1, 2008

Metra trains on the commuter rail's Union Pacific North Line between downtown Chicago and the northern suburbs were up and running Tuesday morning after temporary delays were caused when a train struck and killed a pedestrian on Chicago's North Side.

The trains had been temporarily halted after the pedestrian was struck near the Clybourn Avenue station, officials said.

A Cook County medical examiner's office spokesman said the victim was an unidentified male, and could provide no further information.

Three trains headed toward downtown from Winnetka—Nos. 310, 312 and 316—were canceled due to the incident, Metra said on its Web site.

Train No. 312, which was scheduled to depart downtown at 7:25 a.m. may experience delays of up to 20 minutes in the vicinity of the crash site, according to the Web site.

Train No. 313, which was scheduled to depart downtown at 7:04 a.m., is currently running about seven minutes behind schedule, according to the site.

Jeremy Gorner, Tribune reporter

Copyright © 2008, Chicago Tribune

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