Reader Mail: Whats Up With All the Heat on Muni?

A regular Muni rider sent this in the other day literally asking what is up with heat on the buses of late:

Hi Greg,
I was wondering if you could ask around on something. This may sound bizarre, but then again, this is Muni so maybe not.
I am a daily Muni rider (J/N/K/L/M subway b/n Church and Financial District plus 37 bus, oftentimes a 43, 22, and 6/7/71 mixed in for good times) and I have noticed that since last Tuesday a week ago (the 1st of Sept) – every single time I’ve gotten on a Muni vehicle, whether it’s been a bus or a subway – that the driver has the heat cranking full blast. Last night I was on a M subway and I was very afraid that an old woman and a pregnant woman were each going to pass out. Someone gave the pregnant woman a bottle of water. By the time we got to Church station I literally had sweat dripping off of my face and body, as did everyone around me on the train.
But in the past week when people ask the drivers to turn off the heat, they always say “Oh, it’s broken” and they don’t do anything about it. At least on the buses or the F-Market you can open the windows and hopefully get a little fresh air, but it’s unbearable on the subways. I asked a couple people at my office who ride the subway or different bus lines (1/2/3 and 10) and they said, “You know, I’ve noticed the same thing too.” This seems to be a little bizarre that it’s suddenly happening – whether it be a hot day or cool day, suddenly the majority of Muni vehicles have broken A/C and heat blasting out of the vents?
Is this some little cute stunt that the drivers are pulling to stick it to riders without actually going on strike or having a sick out? Have you heard this from anyone else or am I just cursed? Would you be willing to ask your readers? Perhaps ask MTA to remind its drivers that this isn’t appropriate behavior to direct at riders? Or ask the union if the drivers are suddenly possessed with thin blood and the chills?

To be honest, I hadn’t noticed this lately myself, but then again the weather has been so bizarre, being hot one day and chilly the next, it may be that the buses just can’t handle weather that’s more of a moving target than in the past.
I will say that during our especially hot days the N trains seemed to be mostly cool, though. It was a welcome relief to stand just under the fan and cool off once in a while!
Readers, your thoughts?

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4 Responses to Reader Mail: Whats Up With All the Heat on Muni?

  1. Anne says:

    Last week in the afternoon rush hour I was complaining one of the days that the heater was on too high, in the subway.

  2. jen says:

    Unbelievable!! I take the J everyday and just last week coming home I nearly passed out because of the heat. The train was packed and the heat was on and no air circulating AT ALL. By the time I got off at my stop, I was so woozy that I had trouble walking steadily.

  3. Carlo says:

    Confirmed on N, both the out of control heat during the hot days, and the blasting A/C now that the weather has cool down. What do to psychos think to accomplish?

  4. Bob says:

    I worked on the HVAC (Heating Ventilation & Air Conditioning) Systems. They are automatic. The drivers have no controll other than an on/off circuit breaker.
    Don’t blame the Drivers. Blame the PRIVATE CONTRACTORS we hired to repair the entire fleet of 300 HVAC Systems. They took our Million$ and ran, as usual. Everybody likes to blame the City Workers but it is the Private Contractors who screw us daily.
    The real problem is it is easier to get Federal money to give to Private Contractors than it is to hire Professional Workers. Billions for purchase, pennies for maintenance.

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