After negotiations between the Metropolitan Transit Authority and Long Island Rail Road union leaders remained deadlocked on Monday, the dreaded LIRR strike seemed imminent. Hundreds of thousands of commuters use the train service every weekday, and the MTA says it will be impossible to comfortably accommodate everyone if the LIRR does strike on Sunday, July 20.
If there is a “full strike,” there will not be any train service, the MTA wrote on its official website. In that event, commuters can expect roadways to be even more congested than usual, and commute times will be “significantly longer.”
The MTA urged travelers to choose one of the following options:
1. Telecommute/ Work from home
2. Stay with friends or family who live nearer or in New York City
3. Take advantage of vacation time
4. Carpool with other commuters
5. Use bus services provided by NICE, NYC Transit and MTA Bus
But for many people, these options will not be possible.
Mike Frampton, 31, of West Babylon told International Business Times most of these options don’t work for him. As an ironworker he can’t telecommute and taking a vacation isn’t up to him. He is trying to find a friend to stay with in the city if the strike does happen.
“Traffic is going to be horrendous,” the ironworker said. “Cars will be overheating and tensions will be high.”
“I’m trying to find a friend in the city who I can shack up with while the strike is going on and I’m having no luck.” He added: “Thank God I don’t have pets or dependents because I’d be screwed.”
The bus services might be the best option for most commuters. The MTA provided a full list of its contingency plans, which includes people driving to the Mets' Citi Field in Queens to catch buses and taking a ferry from Glen Cove.
If and when the strike happens, its unknown how long it will last. The minimum could be two days but it could be weeks, theoretically, if no agreement is made.
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