Friday, February 12, 2016

Parade Update: SEPTA calls crowds "historic"

This morning Erin Avon, 31, her husband and their 10-month-old son went to the Wynnewood train station to take public transit to the Phillies Parade – just as the city advised yesterday. After three full trains passed by, they got fed up. “So we got in the car,” Avon said. “We had no issue driving in and parking.” Their story was not unusual at the parade today, where many fans talked about long waits for trains – or getting stuck without being able to board. Over in New Jersey, some fans gave up waiting for PATCO trains and walked over the Ben Franklin Bridge. According to SEPTA spokesman Richard Maloney, the region’s public transit system was just completely overwhelmed by the number of people. “It was historic,” Maloney said. “Starting about 7:30 they just came in hordes. We are running every possible vehicle we have and we’re running every vehicle we have as many times we can.” At 1 p.m, SEPTA halted all inbound Regional Rail trains to the city so they would have all their trains available to take people out of town. They also are not running the Broad Street Line south of the Vine Street stop, again to try and keep more trains available to take people north, away from the parade site. Maloney said SEPTA still has a big task ahead. “The worst is yet to come. Getting everybody out of here is going to be a monumental task,” he said.

Parade Update: SEPTA calls crowds "historic"

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This morning Erin Avon, 31, her husband and their 10-month-old son went to the Wynnewood train station to take public transit to the Phillies Parade – just as the city advised yesterday.

After three full trains passed by, they got fed up.

“So we got in the car,” Avon said. “We had no issue driving in and parking.”

Their story was not unusual at the parade today, where many fans talked about long waits for trains – or getting stuck without being able to board. Over in New Jersey, some fans gave up waiting for PATCO trains and walked over the Ben Franklin Bridge.

According to SEPTA spokesman Richard Maloney, the region’s public transit system was just completely overwhelmed by the number of people.

“It was historic,” Maloney said. “Starting about 7:30 they just came in hordes. We are running every possible vehicle we have and we’re running every vehicle we have as many times we can.”

At 1 p.m, SEPTA halted all inbound Regional Rail trains to the city so they would have all their trains available to take people out of town. They also are not running the Broad Street Line south of the Vine Street stop, again to try and keep more trains available to take people north, away from the parade site.

Maloney said SEPTA still has a big task ahead.

“The worst is yet to come. Getting everybody out of here is going to be a monumental task,” he said.

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William Bender, a Drexel graduate who landed at the Daily News in 2007, has covered everything from South Philly mobsters to doomsday hucksters. He occasionally writes about local food trucks and always eats everything on his plate, whether it be a bloody rib eye or a corrupt politician. E-mail tips to benderw@phillynews.com
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David Gambacorta, has been a reporter with the Daily News since 2005, covering crime, police corruption and all of the other bizarre things that happen in Philadelphia. Now he’s covering the 2015 mayor’s race, because he enjoys a good circus just as much as the next guy. He’s always looking to get a cup of coffee. Send news tips and other musings on life to gambacd@phillynews.com
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