With repairs to the destroyed JFK/UMass signal bungalows continuing apace, the MBTA announced today it hopes to restore fully automated signaling between JFK/UMass and Broadway by Aug. 15, which should cut five minutes off the longer Red Line commutes.
The T says that means it should take 35 minutes to get from Braintree to South Station, down from a peak of 55 minutes right after the
still unexplained June 11 derailment. Before the derailment, the trip normally took 30 minutes.
The T says its repaired the three destroyed bungalows, which contain miles of wiring and signaling equipment that control 29 signals and 11 switches along the Red Line, and added a fourth new one.
Since the derailment, crews have been working to salvage, test, and assess the repair needs of over a thousand damaged electronic components and pieces of equipment in the bungalows. In addition, nearly 20 miles of signal cable were tested for connectivity and repaired as well as over 800 signal control relays, 35 track circuits, and numerous other pieces of related equipment.
A concerned citizen files a 311 complaint about the inhumane conditions on the verge of a deadly heat wave at the Roslindale branch of the RMV:
During a heat emergency the RMV is making people stand outside in the sun. Please help!
Boston 311 promptly closed the case, because, as it noted:
RMV is overseen by the Governor's Office. They can be reached at 617-725-4005.
Ed. note: The federal government, at least, treats its line of waiting people outside in Roslindale better, because they at least have a shady overhang under which to stand while waiting to get into the Social Security office down the street. And there's a Subway right there, too.
Boston firefighters are at 1740 Washington St., between Massachusetts Avenue and East Springfield Street, trying to figure out the source of a "very noxious, irritating" odor on the third, fourth and fifth floors of the five-story rooming house, reported around 12:15 p.m.
BFD has declared a "Level 3" hazmat response, which brings in specialized equipment and firefighters.
All residents of the building - including the occupant of the third-floor room where the odors are believed to be emanating from, have been evacuated. EMS is responding to check out three firefighters who may have been exposed to the fumes.
You won't be the only one suffering in the heat this weekend. The MBTA cautions:
High temps can take a toll on people & trains alike. With extreme heat forecasted, we’re on the lookout for impacts to our rails & overhead wires, faulty A/C, & station ventilation. This weather brings the potential for delays as trains may travel slowly as a precaution.
A woman pushing two children in a stroller spotted the coyote this morning on Grayfield Avenue between Mt. Vernon and Houston streets, steered well clear and called police. Limpy has been prowling the neighborhood for months, has not seemed to bother any people, but has evaded capture and continued to limp in all that time.
Federal lawyers counting on the tender mercies of Maoists now in the Nepali government to protect a member of a rival party who fled here should perhaps do a better job of reading State Department reports, according to a ruling by an appeals court in Boston that will let the man stay here while he makes a formal plea for permanent asylum.
The federal Board of Immigration Appeals and an immigration judge had justified expelling Madhav Prasad Dahal, a former member of the Congress Party in Nespal, based on a 2016 State Department report on Nepal that said the violent Maoists who had threatened and beaten him and held him hostage had signed a peace deal with the government and that the country "held free and fair elections in 2013," so Dahal was no longer at risk in his native country and should no longer be allowed to stay here.
But in a decision authored by retired Supreme Court Justice David Souter, the US Court of Appeals for the First Circuit noted that while the BIA had accurately quoted sentences from the State Department's "country report" on Nepal, it left out the sentences that followed them:
[A]lthough the 2016 Country Report did describe the 2013 election as "free" and "fair," the BIA and the Immigration Judge failed to mention the very next sentence in the Report, which indicates that Maoists continued to persecute their political opponents during the election: "In an effort to obstruct the 2013 elections, a breakaway Maoist faction, the Communist Party of Nepal-Maoist, committed acts of political violence and intimidation." ... Thus, far from undercutting Dahal's fears, the Country Report on the elections recognizes a remaining threat of Maoist persecution.
The ruling continues:
[T]he BIA and the Immigration Judge did not explain why the promulgation of a new constitution in Nepal diminished the risk of political persecution. In fact, other evidence from the Country Reports suggests that the risk is still present. As the Immigration Judge acknowledged, the Country Reports show that Nepal "continue[s] to suffer from human rights problems"; that "there are reports of the government or its agents committing arbitrary or unlawful killings"; and that the government "has essentially abandoned its attempts to bring to justice those insurgents who committed atrocities . . . up until 2006."
The Immigration Judge tried to deflect these findings by noting that this evidence of human rights abuses "has limited significance" with respect to Dahal himself. ... This assertion, however, ignores the record facts that the Maoists are now active participants in the government and have held key leadership posts, facts that limit the efficacy of the peace agreement, elections, and constitution to mitigate Dahal's specific fears of persecution at the Maoists' hands. The BIA, in the course of the appeal, sought to downplay the evidence favorable to Dahal by noting that the Country Reports do not demonstrate "systematic or pervasive persecution of active members in the Nepali Congress Party." ... But the Country Reports plainly indicate that the Maoists have continued to persecute their political opponents,
The court also noted that some of the threats against Dahal and his family came after the Maoists and the government reached their accord in 2010.
Dahal came to the US on a business visa in 2010, didn't leave, then applied for asylum.
The ruling does not mean Dahal can stay in the US permanently, but it does mean he can stay here while he appeals the deportation ruling in court.
The ruling does not say where Dahal is living now. The appeals court covers New England and Puerto Rico.
Amid all the muck and decaying bikes and pilings and stuff exposed at low tide in Fort Point Channel yesterday, a great blue heron stood looking for a meal - one that wouldn't absorb too much of the oily sheen on the water - Johnmcboston observed.