South Station is pulsing with anxious commuters and other travelers as the last Amtrak trains are preparing to leave the train depot by 1:40 Friday afternoon, and commuter rail trains stop running after 3:30 as the region’s transportation system prepares for the blizzard.
The MBTA and commuter rail is also scheduled to cancel service after 3:30, prompting many travellers to queue up early for the ride hide.
“We’ve had a lot of misses when they say it’s going to be bad and nothing happens but I don’t think that’s going to happen this time. I think it’s going to be bad,” said Linda Rinaldi of Norfolk, as she waited for a train out.
“I just hope it’s not as bad as 1978.”
Every Amtrak train was virtually all sold out by noon, according to Amtrak administrator Floyd Hooks of Boston.
“I think they’re more prepared this time than they have been in the past,” said Amtrak engineer Mo Munger of Watertown. “I was here during the storm of 1978 too and this one looks like it’ll be another bad one.”
Despite the chaotic conditions and inconveniences caused by the early transit closings, some travellers said they appreciated all the steps authorities were taking to prepare.
“The MBTA shutting down is a good thing,” said Richard Mitchell of Dorchester. “Better safe than sorry, even if it may suck for some people.”