CTA emergency sign
A change in language now suggests riders be Good Samaritans.
On the CTA’s new 5000-series cars, the “In Case of Emergency” sign is different. The new sign recommends, move to another car, if in danger, help others. It used to be move to another car if your immediate safety is threatened. Why is the CTA suddenly suggesting riders be selfless Good Samaritans?—Tony R., Cicero
In a truly dangerous situation, is it fair for the Chicago Transit Authority to expect riders to transform from mild-mannered commuters to day-saving superheroes? Consider that just last spring, four on-patrol Guardian Angels—rough-and-tumble dudes ostensibly raring for a fight—were slashed with a knife and critically injured while trying to stop a robbery on the Red Line.
The agency says it isn’t asking customers to be brave Batman-like crusaders. It merely wants to remind people to use a little common sense and civility if things get urgent. “The change in language is intended to encourage our customers to be courteous and mindful of others during an emergency situation that requires passengers to move to another rail car,” spokeswoman Catherine Hosinski says of the revised signs, which began replacing the old signs in 2011. “This would include, but is not limited to: assisting with or holding the door open while customers are crossing between rail cars; offering a guiding hand for elderly customers as they cross; notifying CTA personnel or emergency responders if there is a customer with a disability or in a wheelchair and cannot make the transfer.”
In other words, think courtesy, not courage.