If you haven’t had the opportunity to step on a real, live LINK train yet, tomorrow (Saturday) is your lucky day.  Just head down to the future sight of the Othello Light Rail station for the MLK Safety Street Fair.  The purpose, I suppose, is to teach people how not to get hit by a train.

The headlining politician is King County Councilman and STB favorite Larry Phillips.  Chances are good you’ll see more than one STB blogger there, too, maybe even some of the too-good-to-show-at-meetups writers.  I would imagine there will also be some ST personnel that you could corner and push your pet agenda on.

The Fair runs from 11-4, with the program starting at 1.

7 Replies to “Board a LINK Train Tomorrow!”

  1. Question about LINK.

    How are people in wheelchairs handled? I’ve never been on a light rail or commuter train, but I do ride the bus, and when a person in a wheelchair boards, the driver must come back and put belts or straps on the chair in order to secure it. Some people can’t do it themselves.

    How does this work on a train? The operator obviously can’t come out of his compartment every time someone on a wheelchair boards, can he? Is the answer that they don’t have to be strapped down on a train, but do on a bus?

    1. Hey, I’d be glad to answer that.

      The first part of the answer is that yes, they don’t need to be strapped down. The trains are stable, largely just by virtue of being huge blocks of steel, and don’t stop or start suddenly (or hit bumps). There’s not any need to strap down. I believe this is already the case on Sounder.

      The second part is that because there’s level boarding, wheelchair users will just roll on, so there’s no need for ramps (or any operator interaction). I actually saw a wheelchair user come on board today to try it out!

      Oh, and you just made me think of something interesting. Other users will probably have to do one thing for wheelchair users – fold up the seat for them if they can’t do it themselves. You see people do this for others all the time on the bus already, though, so I doubt it’d be a problem.

      1. Actually one thing that I noticed on the train was that when you fold the seat at the wheelchair spot down, it is spring-loaded and doesn’t lock into place. So when a wheelchair comes, people who are sitting there can just stand up and the seat will fold back up.

      2. The SLUT and Tacoma Link also have these virtues, which as someone who pushes a stroller regularly I can tell you is a lot nicer than using the lift or the old heave-ho to get on the bus. Plus you don’t have that awkward feeling of taking a lot more time to get on.

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