Ladies and gentlemen, let out a collective exhale: according to a scoop from William Neuman in the Times, the consumption of the occasional (or even frequent!) alcoholic beverage will continue on Metro-North.
Months ago, an MTA board member/ninny named Michael Pally suggested the MTA ban alcohol to safeguard the Authority from lawsuits levied by drunken passengers hurting themselves on their drive home from the train. But an overwhelmingly negative response from riders–and apparently zero support from his fellow board members–shot down Pally’s schoolmarmish notion.
Neuman mentions a “thick sheaf of petitions signed by what officials estimated were thousands of commuters” defending their right to drink. (Uh, how come no one asked me to sign?)
While I really haven’t seen any bad displays of drunken behavior on the trains in my seven months of riding, Neuman digs up some interesting stats. The cops issued 287 tickets on Metro-North and Long Island Railroad for drunken disturbances last year (I’ll bet my monthly mortgage payment the majority went to Strong Islanders), and there were 994 cases of people needing medical help on the train after drinking too much, though most of the drinking surely took place in the city before boarding the train.
Anyway, raise your Sam Adams or your airplane bottle of Chard in honor of the news, and throw your trusty platform barkeep–he of the 97% favorable review–a buck.