Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Those who need to be the first to get out of the train

I've written about this before but it's fresh on my mind again because I just don't understand why there are certain people who MUST be lined up right in front of the train doors way before the train stops and door opens.

Here's an example of I'm talking about: A woman who has been standing at the back of the train since MacArthur (leaning against the in-between glass doors to the next car), behind crowds of other standing passengers in a very packed train, begins pushing her way through all those people as soon as the train enters the Transbay Tube. I've seen her before, she's a BART commuter. So I know that SHE knows from her daily rides that more than 50% of the train exits at Embarcadero and she really does not need to push and shove everyone that early just to line herself up in front of the exit.

As you know, no one moves towards the doors until the T.O. announces "Now approaching....Embarcadero Station" while the train waits for the train in front to empty out, and we feel the brakes really set in. This woman can easily walk out leisurely with the rest of the passengers at that time. It'll probably take her 10 more seconds to exit. But instead, she insists on pushing and shoving people out of the way, "excuse me, excuse me, I am getting out at the next stop," while her two huge bags bumps into arms, legs, and faces. I've heard people tell her a few time, "So are the rest of us, lady! Just wait!"

Aside from her, I've seen others who do the same thing. They push through crowds way before exit time in order to line themselves up right in front of the door.

Not sure why people do that! Maybe they have a connection to catch? That's the only logical explanation I can think of.


Anonymous said...

*raises hand* Okay, I am one of these type of individuals, but not when the entire car I am riding on is full. I am not worried the train will depart with me still on it when I intend to off board at my stop.

On my commute into Lake Merritt I will usually stand at Rockridge, because a 5-car train will nearly be standing room only departing the station and someone else could use the seat when I will be transferring at MacArthur.

As for the trip home in the evenings, I will sit behind the lead cab, near the TO (9-10-car train). When the train departs Concord, I will get up and walk through 4 or 5 cars to get to the set of doors that will open at the base of the elevator at N. Concord. Again, the trains are not crowded this far down the C Line and there are others who are already standing near the doors with the same idea.

But pushing and moving through a commute train in the AM or PM in order to be the first off seems a bit rude, unless the train is late (more than 5 minutes) and you have a bus connection to make.

bartmusings said...

Thanks for sharing your perspective and situation with us! Always help to see a different point of view. But glad you agree that pushing through a very crowded train during prime hours is not the best thing to do!

Anonymous said...

As a follow up to my original post, I should have added this activity of pushing through a crowded train should not be surprising. Americans (most) are always in a hurry. Hell, look at the freeways people are always in a rush or hurry to get where their are going. So some individuals pushing through an full car, while rude is not surprising.

Anonymous said...

true that most people are in a hurry, including me but there are times when rushing makes no sense. if 25 other people around you are getting off at embarcadero, isnt it easier if you just follow the flow of exit when the door actually opens? i dont get some people.

Anonymous said...

I hate walking behind slow people who don't obey the rules (manners) posted on escalators.

I don't line up in the morning, since I'm really in no hurry to get to work.

At home, in whatever car is adjacent to the escalator at Pleasant Hill, I generally get up from seat (or move from standing position) to the doors upon leaving Walnut Creek.

Since I walk home, I generally like to leave the station asap so I avoid cars leaving the garage, etc since a lot of them are in a greater hurry (and therefore disobey traffic signs).

Anonymous said...

I don't like queing up at the escalator at Embarcadero so sometimes I will make my way to the doors before the train stops. And also, a lot of people who don't get off at the same stop as I do on a crowded train, don't make any effort to get out of the way when the doors open. You think they are getting off since they are blocking the doors or aisle then you have to shove your off at the last minute. Depends on how I feel if I get to the door early yor not. Some mornings I don't feel like shuffling behind a crowd of people.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 1- I can understand moving through different cars to end up at a convenient exit. That makes all sorts of sense. I myself have done that before.

But why do people insist on being in front of the OF THE CAR THEY ARE SITTING IN...I bet you they are the same people that stand in from the doors and don't let people exit. Or the ones that stand in line and DON'T move when the approaching train is NOT the one their are taking.

Anonymous said...

I have had the experience of getting on eastbound at Civic Center and being scooted towards the center of the car as it fills up. Then at my exit (Fruitvale), people near the doors don't step off to facilitate a speedy exit by those in the middle of the car. Squeezing through the press as the door-close bell goes off is a little aggravating. After it happens once or twice, you realize you'll be pushing past them in any case, so you start taking preventive action, and work your way toward the doors early.

That level of crowding at Fruitvale, however, is a relatively rare occurrence. Apparently people don't know how to handle it out of sheer unfamiliarity. This is not the same thing as what happens at Embarcadero, where every morning the car fairly well empties out, and being unable to exit in time is highly unlikely. Surely the person you described should have figured this out by now.

As far as working your way to a convenient exit door goes, it seems to me that strolling down the platform is less effort than making your way through the train. At very least you don't have to open a bunch of train doors.

Anonymous said...

while pushing thru a crowd is not pleasant, being AT the door ready to step off IS proper subway etiquette IMO. Slugs who don't even stand up until the train is in the station clearly do not grok RAPID transit

Anonymous said...

I do not stand up until the train approaches the station. I'm not tall enough to reach the bars and I know that the train does not always stop smoothly. Am I a slug? Why push your way to the doors when everyone in front of you is exiting also?

Anonymous said...

no, I am NOT speaking about pushing thru the crowd. But even small kids can reach ythe handgrabs on seat corners. Point is don't stay furthest from thedoor until your stop. move a stop or so earlier toward the doords--there is always movement at each stop to facillitate this. . REAL commuters plan to board if possible atr the door best suited to where they get off, are ready to move when approaching their stop, and MOVE!