Why are train crews treated like criminals when someone jumps in front of a train? See what former TWU Local 100 President Roger Toussaint has to say.


The MTA plays the game of “cover your ass” well, even if it means treating their train crews like murderers.

A comment on the report about the T/O who allegedly ran when he was being questioned following a 12/9 (man under) suicide. Like most normal human beings, it is completely understandable that he was probably already traumatized by the incident. Under normal circumstances, train operators are required to walk the road bed and do first identification.

There they encounter dismembered bodies. Operators are simply not trained for that. In this instance, whether he had that exposure or not, a life was lost, and that’s heavy to overbearing on the mind. Unless he is to be held to some mythical supernatural standard, his reaction comes as no surprise. Outrageous and Cruel is how they treat Train Operators (and CR’s) who experience a 12/9 (man under).

A week does not pass without one or two such incidents. That means a whole population of traumatized operators are out there. Already traumatized (and probably scarred for life) after seeing dismembered bodies under the cars, like in a war zone, they then treat them like suspects and criminals, even when they know that its a jumper, thereby driving into them a feeling of guilt over suicides!!!

It is sickening. Its why when I took over I required staff to respond to ALL 12/9’s and escort our train crews in order to curb this type of abuse rather than leave them alone and at the mercy of white hats and the cops.

I got into trouble with Steve Downs boys for that, for requiring them to get off their asses and get out to the field instead of hanging out under the Labor Relations bosses. By training, under Downs and Co., they never left their cushy Labor Relations offices and go out to the field as they could and should.

Betcha the train crews are back to facing their tormentors on their own again, under the Samuelsen/Downs crew.

– Roger Toussaint


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One thought on “Why are train crews treated like criminals when someone jumps in front of a train? See what former TWU Local 100 President Roger Toussaint has to say.

  1. Where was the outcry on Local 100 officials on behalf of this Operator to his public shaming in the face of this tragedy? Where was their explanation to the public about what our train crews go through and endure with all these 12/9’s (man under)? By their silence, were they protecting the members or the system the Authority has in place to torment the crews and re-traumatize them? Go along, Get along – Is that how the current administration “does its job” and fulfill its obligations to its members, even in the face of such abusive treatment? We had management retrained about the rules of engagement when 12/9’s occur with regard to questioning our crews and their treatment. We did not just leave it up to the reps to face the pressure, I told the head of LR and the TA President myself that there was no more business as usual, but new rules of engagement regardless of anything, and we enforced that. How have we lowered our standards! Mr Downs and his boys wanted to walk around in sneakers at LR offices because they had no intention of ever responding to the field or to these 12/9’s and they didn’t. I salute those reps that are trying … despite lack of leadership by example and the obvious collaboration between the top leadership of the union and the TA, the MTA and Gov. Cuomo.


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