Metro Shutdown: What They Are Saying

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By on March 16, 2016 in Current Events with 0 Comments

There has been a lot of buzz about the Metro closing in DC for the day. Members of Congress from the DC area weighed in as well as numerous residents facing the added commuting hassles and altered work schedules.

Lawmakers seemed to generally be angry about it, AFGE was really angry about it, and residents expressed mixed emotions on Twitter varying from frustrated to accepting it for what it is and even trying to find humor in it in some cases.

Some of the quotes and tweets about the situation follow below. WJLA has also compiled the best #MetroShutdown memes and gifs being posted by Metro riders.

“It’s sad that it’s come to this, but hundreds of thousands of people depend on the safety of the Metro system. We need to take it seriously. I’m glad that Metro’s new leadership is treating system safety with an appropriate sense of urgency.”
U.S. Sen. Mark Warner (D-VA)
“My constituents rely on Metro Rail for safe travel every single day. I appreciate that General Manager Paul Wiedefeld’s actions, while drastic, are being taken first and foremost to protect Metro Rail riders’ safety. At the same time this unprecedented action highlights the fundamental cultural change that needs to take place at Metro. Instead of Metro riders being constantly inconvenienced and put in danger, Metro management throughout the entire system needs to be shaken to its core and be rid of its culture of incompetence.

“New accountability measures must be put in place. In order to accommodate the thousands of federal employees who will be without service tomorrow, the Office of Personnel Management should let our federal workforce throughout the National Capital Region have the option to telework.”
Rep. Barbara Comstock (R-VA)

“For a long time Marylanders have been denied the safe, reliable and efficient Metro system that they deserve. It is deeply disturbing that the system is in such a precarious state that it must be entirely and abruptly shut down during the middle of a workweek. This is a stark demonstration of a total agency failure; now is the time for every stakeholder in WMATA to demand better performance and improved safety.”
Rep. John Delaney (D-MD)
“Today’s decision by General Manager Wiedefield to shut down the Metrorail system for 24 hours is a gut punch to the hundreds of thousands of commuters who depend on the system. This decision, while perhaps necessary, will cause significant inconvenience and will disrupt the functioning of the federal government in our nation’s capital. OPM must recognize that challenge and should, at a minimum, grant unscheduled leave or telework for federal employees tomorrow. While I am extremely frustrated with this news, safety must be our number one priority. This dramatic action highlights the need for long-term safety and reliability improvements throughout the system.”

Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-VA)

“Employees who rely on Metro to commute to work should not be forced to use personal leave because of Metro’s decision to close its doors.

“While many employees are able to work from home, that’s not an option for most federal and D.C. government employees. That’s especially true for employees at the lower end of the pay scale.

“Due to the unprecedented and unexpected nature of this situation, OPM should have authorized the use of administrative leave for affected employees. I am calling on OPM to reverse its decision and grant administrative leave to all employees who were unable to report to work due the Metro shutdown.”
AFGE national president J. David Cox, Sr.

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About the Author

Ian Smith is one of the co-founders of He enjoys writing about current topics that affect the federal workforce.