About This Blog

This blog is about recurrent problems with the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority's public transit system. My particular crusade involves flagship line 910 (the "Silver Line") and its persistent, institutional unreliability after 9 PM.

I have been dealing directly and in good faith with Metro for some time now on this issue, but that private dialog has not resulted in any improvement in service. I started this blog in an attempt to provide another more public source of motivation for Metro to address their systemic failures.

Below I have posted my entire email exchange with Metro on this subject, and I will continue to update as the saga continues. The correspondence begins in November of 2011 only because that is when I discovered how to contact customer service. The problems with the silver line (and its transitway predecessors) started well before then. This email chain is unedited, except that I redacted my own name and contact info, and I removed redundant quotes of previous messages. Names and email addresses of Metro personnel have not been removed. I encourage you to contact them with your own thoughts. Also, feel free to leave comments here. I will probably delete anything vacuous or off topic, but if you have other complaints that aren't getting any traction, or if you have any suggestions that might improve service, please let me know.

For new visitors, the best way to read this blog is chronologically from bottom to top. The earliest entry is dated 2011-11-30. Since I can't seem to force all the posts onto one page, you'll have to start by clicking "2011" in the "Blog Archive" just below, or scroll all the way down and click "Older Posts."



Subject: Re: silver line MIA
From: fixmetro
Date: August 17, 2012 02:39:38 PDT
To: HorneT@metro.net
Cc: GALVANJ@metro.net, AlejandroF@metro.net, borja.leon@lacity.org, GreenwoodM@metro.net, CustomerRelations@metro.net, BoardSecretary@metro.net, SOTOPA@metro.net, WoodsonJ@metro.net, Hollandr@metro.net, MCano@lacbos.org, SNemer@lacbos.org, SCruz@lacbos.org, KBarger@lacbos.org, TAYLORP@metro.net, LEAHYA@metro.net

Guarded optimism will not get me home. Those of you at metro who are working this problem (if any) are doing so on the clock. When these buses do not show up, it costs me and other riders personal free time and/or sleep that we will never get back. I do not work for metro. I don't get paid to observe and report back on your reliability. Asking your customers to risk their free time to do your quality control is disrespectful and unprofessional.

When you yourself use phrases like "ongoing problems" and "guardedly optimistic," it does not inspire confidence. So I'm going to need some assurances. I would like to know if you have implemented any real, substantive measures beyond those you described on july 16th (which I, perhaps naively, assumed were preliminary in nature). In any case, I would also like to know what quality control measures YOU, METRO, have put into place to gauge the success or failure of your attempted solutions. It's been a month since you supposedly started taking this seriously. You should be able to tell me you secretly observed 40 or 50 opportunities for the 9:03, 9:33, and 10:02 pm buses to show up and how many actually did. You've got about 80 more opportunities in the coming month. Let me know what you find out. 

My EZ pass is reimbursed by my employer, so a 7 day pass is of no use to me. Assuming you're not about to offer to pay me for my lost time or hand out open-ended taxi vouchers, I don't think there is anything that you can realistically do for me besides your job: fixing the problem. Or maybe you could all provide me with your personal mobile numbers so I can call you for a ride the next time I'm left high and dry at harbor freeway station. 


  1. Tracking the Silver Line again tonight. One of the two trips is 38 minutes late tonight. The other one is only four minutes down. I think the bald driver is wreaking his havoc again.

    Interesting tip if you are near a computer, you can use the Nextbus raw feed. For the Silver Line it is http://webservices.nextbus.com/service/publicXMLFeed?command=vehicleLocations&a=lametro&r=910&t=0

    and it will show ALL buses on the route, even those which have somehow disappeared from the public Nextbus interface. You have to be able to Google the lat/long though, but the rest is easy enough to read.

  2. MTA has, temporarily at least, added additional trips on the Silver Line so that there are two buses an hour from Artesia to El Monte, with one bus an hour serving the upper level of Cal State and County/USC, most likely due to complaints from those riders. http://www.metro.net/service/advisories/update/bus/1059/

    As usual, they have done an awful job of promoting the added late night service (like they have failed to promote the 2 am trains out of Long Beach and Pasadena, which were an addition to the added Friday/Saturday late night service). Also, there is no Nextbus on these new trips, and evening trips that are trackable continue to be 10-20 minutes late, breaking connections at each end. Still IF these trips actually exist on the street, this is a boon to late night riders and may get me back to riding again, especially if the "A" trips are trackable via Nextbus so that I can avoid those 45 minute waits at El Monte.