Several dozen incidents on metal slats have been officially recorded by metro representatives this year alone. The councilor asks whether, due to the recurring problem, the strips will be replaced with a different model.
“A few days ago, the residents of Ursynów again drew our attention to the problem of slippery slats for the blind in the subway. Anyone who has ever used them knows what I’m talking about,” wrote councilor Maciej Antosiuk (Ursynów Project) on social media.
As he recalled, in 2018, after the residents’ protests, parts of the strips at the Kabaty and Imielin stations were replaced with grooved ones, i.e. those with anti-slip rubber support.
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“Then the Warsaw Metro promised to see how their tests turn out and, if necessary, replace the strips at other stations. A few years have passed and the problem is still there. That’s why, as a councilor, I submitted an interpellation asking about the statistics of accidents on strips in the metro and the deadline for replacing them with safer ones. Our demands in this matter are also supported by organizations of blind and visually impaired people. I hope that it will be possible to replace the slippery slats with anti-slip ones throughout the metro,” he added.
Several dozen incidents a year
We have written about the problem on tvnwarszawa.pl many times. Metal strips for the blind only worked when it was dry. When it rained or snowed and the stations got wet, the silver rails began to run without hands. It was very easy to slip and get hurt. It is also dangerous when the slats detach from the ground.
Residents and activists sent letters on this matter to the Municipal Transport Authority. Officials initially said there was no point in expecting any changes, but later they changed their mind. As a test, they installed other types of strips at two Ursynów stations. Ultimately, they said they were working on another solution.
We asked officials about statistics on how many accidents occurred in the subway after slipping on slats. Andrzej Rejnson from the Warsaw Metro press office admitted that in 2023 alone, “53 events related to the lines were recorded.” – Guide lines are regularly replaced and supplemented in places where there are large gaps. We also repair damaged ones on an ongoing basis, Rejnson assured.
ZTM: we do not plan to replace the strips
Despite this, the city does not plan to replace the strips with another model. – The Public Transport Authority does not currently plan to replace the strips. The marking is consistent with the Regulation of the Minister of Infrastructure on the technical conditions to be met by metro buildings and their location. Under it, among other things, regulations related to marking station spaces, including platforms, for people with special needs were regulated – Tomasz Kunert, ZTM spokesman, leaves no doubt.
Main photo source: Mateusz Szmelter, tvnwarszawa.pl