Thursday, May 21, 2020

MTA To Bring In Ultraviolet Technology To Fight COVID; Cleaners Are Subjected To Use Dirty, Used Cleaning Supplies

By N Miller (Creator Of The Transportation Hub)

NEW YORK, NY- Its time to take the fight to coronavirus with technology. The MTA announced this Tuesday that they'll be rolling out 230 far ultraviolet-C lamps on various trains and buses next week for testing to kill the virus that causes COVID-19. A demo for this was performed at the Corona Subway Maintenance Facility (home of the IRT Flushing 7 Line). The lamps will be used in view from the straphangers in yards and depots during overnight closure. Despite being less harmful than other UV rays, the UVC cleaning tests will still require the areas to be empty while being disinfected. UV lights have been used in hospitals and urgent-care facilities but have not yet been deployed to disinfect the coronavirus or on public transit. This will be conducted during three weeks from late May to early June.

The MTA said this statement via Twitter:

"The lamps use UVC, which is safe for humans but kills the virus responsible for COVID-19. In the coming weeks, we'll be evaluating the efficiency and cost-effectiveness of UVC technology while maintaining our strict protocols and procedures to ensure the safety of our employees and customers."

Something like this should've been brought to the table at the very least at the beginning of the 2nd week of April, when the COVID-19 deaths were at its peak. This agency should NOT cheering and patting themselves on the back, especially Sarah Feinberg, who said this ludicrous statement on Tuesday; "The MTA has been a global leader in protecting the health and safety of our employees". I find that statement to be asinine and hilarious because near 130 NYCT workers died from this deadly disease and no one at leadership level did anything to help strengthen the protection of the employees. Cuomo, Feinberg and Foye, please do all of us a favor by havimg several seats and keep quiet.  

Foye said the decision to advance the pilot comes after months of tests by the MTA and Dr. David Brenner, a professor of radiation biophysics and director of the Center for Radiological Research at Columbia University. Manhattan’s popular Magnolia Bakery is also working with Columbia to test out the tech, known as “far-UVC” for short. The cash-strapped agency is paying PURO Lighting $1 million for the lamps. If the MTA decides to expand the program system-wide, PURO will have to bid against other companies for a long-term contract. We shall see how all this will play out within the next couple of weeks. 
NEW YORK, NY- "We're not killing the virus; we're spreading it". Contract workers cleaning the subways of COVID-19 say this late last week that the supplies they use are dirty and the personal protective equipment (PPE) they’re given is inadequate. One of the workers claims their lives are in danger while they’re not even able to make the subways safer. As we all know, TA hired 700+ non-union cleaners to disinfect and clean out the subway system not long ago, via a third party vendor, Professional Cleaning of LN Pro Services LLC.

A female worker has come forward and explains the unclean practices that takes place. She says she is fed up with being scared of working in conditions she claims are dangerous. She claims the company gives out the same old rags each day for an entire shift, and mops which are not cleaned properly after each shift, nor are they able to clean them during shifts. She also claims workers are given one face mask per day regardless if it breaks or gets dirty; gloves that fall apart frequently, which they cannot replace until they finish the car they're working on; and only Thursday, after two weeks of work, when they heard an inspector was coming, were they allegedly provided a disposable gown to clean in that they must reuse for each shift. They would use dirty used rags and utilize dirty black mop bucket water. That’s straight up trifling and disgusting.

Lily Sierra, the third vendor’s CEO said this in a response via e-mail:

“Our focus on our team's health has always been a priority and specially now working through this pandemic. We are always supervised heavily by our contractors and MTA personal at all times. They supervise the work that we perform and we are one of the top performing companies. If our cleaning resulted in infectious and dirty work, I am confident that the years of experience of the inspectors would have pointed out. We have never gotten this feedback. None of my employees have contracted the virus working within the trains during this pandemic ... We have managers who supervise our employees throughout their shift from start to finish. Their duty is to immediately replenish any gear that needs to be replaced."

MTA spokesperson Abbey Collins expressed this in a statement:

"Pursuant to MTA contracts, third-party vendors are required to provide proper PPE to all workers. We have conducted daily spot checks on these contractors, including observing LN Pro's operation last week, to ensure the quality of work and safety of employees, which is the MTA's number one priority. That said, we will investigate any claims and take whatever action is required.”

I don't know what's worse; the fact that the TA took at least two weeks to hire cleaners while workers were dying and the homeless made the subways their property OR the non-union cleaners making a bad situation EVEN WORSE by using dirty rags and mops. The fact that these cleaners are only allowed to have one mask per shift and gloves until the car is completely clean, also use the same gown that everyone else use really shows how disgusting the negligence is towards the workers.  If things continue the way they are now, there's going to be one hell of a major backlash and trust me, its gonna be real ugly. Treating the workers like expendables will come to haunt this agency in the worst way possible. 

In other news, a creative train operator closed down the two closest seat to his cab, same with the conductor, and gets threatened with disciplinary action. This shows how the MTA values death over safety. A couple decided to get rowdy and have @n@l s*x inside a train station in Brooklyn, putting on one hell of a show (please check at your own leisure).  Lastly, in the aviation world, Airbus opens it production for A220-100 and A220-200 for JetBlue and an A400M tactical/strategic airlifter and A330 Multi RoleTanker Transport carried perform life-saving medevac missions during the COVID-19 pandemic in the UK. 

What do you guys think about this week's stories? Let me know in the comments below and have a safe Memorial Day. 

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