Had This Been an REAL Emergency, fg't it!
Monday morning commuters on the PATH to Exchange Place around 9 a.m. were surprised when the train didn't stop at Exchange Place and carried all passengers to WTC.
At the WTC the EP bound commuters were told to go up and around and board a different train for Exchange Place.
When that crowded train pulled into Exchange Place the commuters were directed away from the triple-escalator bistairs, to the ELEVATORS down the railing.
Guess what it's like when hundreds and hundreds of commuters try to board one elevator to fresh air and civilization?
You don't want to know.
Fortunately, before the lone elevator there is a stairwell.
Along the walk there is an emergency stair case that says civilization is six flights up.
To the surprise of crowd of hundreds and hundreds of hapless commuters, the stairwell only led to a double set of elevators.
The elevators fit about 25 passengers at a time.
You do the math.
Above ground, the main entrance to the Exchange Place station was wrapped off in yellow police emergency tape.
No one was being allowed in the station. And everyone scrambling from the underground was hurrying to work.
Had this been an actual emergency, everyone trapped underground waiting for the friggin elevators would surely have perished.
If anything, this minute catastrophe has assured the hapless commuters that the PATH emergency services have a long, long way to go.
And, we hope, soon.
---- Happy Trails,
PS - Nearly an hour later, commuters through Exchange Place were told the exit had been closed due to falling ice from nearby buildings. The commuters were allowed to use the emergency stairs to exit.
Copyright © 2006 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
This text first appeared on NJ.COM