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Car drivers were at fault for two recent Green Line crashes, students react

After two Green Line accidents on Boston University campus this month within a week of each other, students voiced their concerns regarding safety on campus.

The Green Line crashing into a car at the intersection in front of the Boston University Bridge and Comm Ave. COURTESY OF JONATHAN MESSER VIA TWITTER

On Nov. 19, a car crashed into a MBTA Green Line train near Amory Street, suspending B Line services from Kenmore to Babcock Street for approximately 30 minutes. 

The Nov. 23 crash occurred near the BU Bridge when a man driving a Maserati took a wrong turn while making a left on Commonwealth Avenue. The Maserati received significant damage in the crash. The B Line between Kenmore and Packard’s Corner stops was shut down for two hours and riders were told to take the 57 bus line instead. 

Lisa Battiston, the deputy press secretary for the MBTA, wrote in an email that police and emergency personnel responded to both incidents and no injuries were reported.

“In each of these instances, the motorist was at fault,” Battiston wrote. “It’s important that motorists adhere to the rules of the road and operate their personal vehicles in a safe manner, especially around clearly marked train tracks.”

BU Spokesperson Colin Riley said students should be alert and aware of their surroundings while on campus to keep themselves safe.

“We want students to know, and I think we tell them that from the very first day there on campus, please use the crosswalks, please use the walk lights, please look both ways for vehicles and for other moving vehicles like bicycles (or) scooters,” Riley said.

These crashes come after the MBTA General Manager Steve Poftak and Massachusetts Department of Transit Secretary Jamey Tesler testified in front of the Massachusetts Committee on Transportation this past summer to discuss the safety problems regarding the T. 

The MBTA’s safety practices are also under investigation by the Federal Transit Administration due to long term staffing shortages which led to overworked employees and overall ignorance towards safety concerns brought up by employees. 

Gaby Polakovic, a freshman in the College of Engineering, said she has seen students almost get hit by the T. 

“I’ll even admit to kind of being distracted, especially when I’m crossing the street, ” Polakovic said. “Sometimes I’m just in the zone and in a rush usually. I definitely see a lot of students almost get hit sometimes.”

Polakovic said drivers honking at pedestrians is beneficial. 

“It’s good that they have bells and stuff going off,” Polakovic said. “So you know, I hear it coming because a lot of people don’t look both ways and stuff.”

Elizabeth Hanson, a freshman in the College of Arts and Sciences, said she is concerned about how many people are on the T at one time.

“It’s not like I am concerned with getting hit while crossing the street,” Hanson said. “The safety concern, I think, is how many people are packed into it, because I’ve been in there when it’s really squished and it’s kind of scary.”

Gabriel Paasche-Orlow, a junior in the College of Arts and Sciences, said he believes the infrastructure of the T is to blame for its recent accidents.

“I wouldn’t say that it has anything to do with the drivers, the infrastructure is terrible,” he said. “The trains are like 50 years old, the tracks are ancient.”

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