Safety gets special attention from new Metro advisory council

WASHINGTON — Metro’s 21-member Riders Advisory Council is taking a fresh look at Metro safety, creating a new committee devoted to the issue.

The council members who advise the transit agency on its operations previously handled safety-related issues under the Customer Service Committee, but the new Safety and Security Committee has held its first meeting.

“Right now what the group is doing is just gathering ideas,” said Barbara Hermanson, of Alexandria, chairwoman of the Riders Advisory Committee.

Metro is in the midst of a yearlong effort to get three years’ worth of track repairs done in a year’s time, which is limiting service and causing delays.

“It’s an inconvenience temporarily to the riders, but overall it needs to be done,” said Christine Madden, of Arlington, a new member of the Riders Advisory Council and a member of the safety committee.

“When people are paying for transportation they’re paying for safe transportation.”

The first meeting was devoted to organizational matters.

“Every mass transit system could improve in many ways, and safety is one that can certainly be improved upon,” said Joe Suh, of D.C., a member of the safety panel.

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