A train trolley crash underneath downtown Boston left 50 passengers injured last Friday. The conductor admitted that he was looking down at the time of the crash as he was texting his girlfriend. Officials are cracking down – the head of the Boston-area transit authority is pushing for a ban on cell phone usage for any employee working aboard mass transit carriers (buses and trains). This crash, though it did not result in any fatalities, had the potential for even greater disaster than the 50 it did injure – conjuring up tragic images of the deadly California Metrolink crash last year which also resulted from cell phone texting.
This issue certainly needs to be fixed immediately in all areas featuring rail transit, not just the Boston area. Any personnel operating a common carrier such as a train or bus has many legal responsibilities towards their passengers. This employee failed to live up to those legal responsibilities, and his negligence has brought about numerous injuries. Authorities must do whatever they can to prevent negligence of this sort. Certainly the employee himself now realizes the inherent irrationality in putting so many lives at risk for the sake of text messages.