Taking public transit in snowy conditions can present some challenges, but with the right preparation and awareness, you can navigate the winter weather more comfortably and safely. Here are some tips:
- Check Transit Updates: Before heading out, check for any updates or advisories related to your public transit system. Delays or changes in service may occur due to inclement weather.
- Bundle Up: Dress warmly with layers, including a waterproof outer layer. Wear a hat, gloves, and a scarf to protect against the cold and wind. Waterproof and insulated footwear is also essential to keep your feet dry.
- Arrive Early: Snow and ice can slow down public transit services. Plan to arrive at the bus stop or train station a bit earlier than usual to account for potential delays.
- Monitor Real-Time Updates: Use transit apps or websites that provide real-time updates on bus or train arrivals. This can help you avoid waiting outside in the cold for an extended period.
- Watch Your Step: Be cautious when navigating sidewalks and boarding vehicles. Snow and ice can create slippery surfaces. Walk slowly, use handrails when available, and pay attention to your surroundings.
- Carry Essentials: Pack essential items such as tissues, hand sanitizer, and lip balm. It’s also a good idea to have an extra pair of socks and gloves in case you get wet.
- Protect Electronics: Keep your electronic devices, like smartphones and transit cards, in a secure and waterproof bag or pocket. Cold temperatures can affect battery life, so carry a power bank if needed.
- Be Patient and Understanding: Winter weather can cause delays and disruptions. Stay patient and be understanding of any challenges that transit operators may face. They are working to ensure your safety.
- Stay Informed about Service Changes: Public transit schedules may change during severe weather. Stay informed about any alterations to routes or services, and plan your journey accordingly.
- Report Issues: If you notice any safety concerns or issues with the transit system, report them to the appropriate authorities. This helps ensure a safer experience for everyone.
- Use Handrails and Priority Seating: Inside the transit vehicle, use handrails to prevent slipping. If available, use priority seating to avoid standing for an extended period, especially if the vehicle is crowded.
- Have a Backup Plan: Be aware of alternative routes or modes of transportation in case your usual route is severely affected by weather conditions.
By taking these precautions and staying informed, you can make your winter public transit experience safer and more comfortable.
Here is what the TTC have done to prepare their vehicles, work cars and stations to keep you moving on your commute:
- Winter weather information signs are at bus stops routinely taken out of service when 5 cm or more of snow or 5mm or more of freezing rain fall. The signs identify the closest in-service stop, include a QR code you can scan to see if the stop is in service and provide contact information for the TTC.
- Heating system checks have been completed on all TTC vehicles to ensure you are warm on your journey.
- Anti-icing vehicles are tuned up and ready to go
- Snow throwers and power rail brush work cars have been inspected and are ready to keep trains moving in the snow.
- All subway stations are stocked with shovels, ice choppers and salt to ensure you have a clear path into the station when the snow starts to fall.
- Snow blowers and plows are ready at TTC stations to clear bus platforms and entryways to prevent snow from piling up.