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The MTA Mobile Alert System

Is the LIRR e-mail and text messaging alert system really working?

If you are a commuter like me with access to the internet on your phone and/or text messaging capabilities, you can sign up for LIRR email and text messaging alerts.

These alerts can be customized by time, days and branch. The concept is an excellent one to keep customers informed of delays, cancellations, changes, track work etc.

However- yes there is an however- rarely will the alerts stating there is a problem, come through timely or even at all. There have been several occasions where there were delays and the alert never came through. Instead, an alert stating that the LIRR is on or close to schedule comes through.

I often question if the LIRR even tested the system or if anyone else is complaining about it like me. This past Friday my train was almost over an hour late. I received the update almost two hours after I typically would be arriving at Farmingdale station.

Does anyone else utilize the LIRR email and text message alerts? What are your compliments or complaints about the system?

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JM August 08, 2011 at 11:17 AM
Usually I get them as I'm in the situation rather than before but I feel like I know about problems more now. If I'm on a slow train I at least know why since they never tell you anything while actually on the slow train. I like them.
Sheila August 10, 2011 at 03:55 PM
I agree that I generally like the alerts and do not receive them after the fact. However, I often never receive them at all. My question is about not just not getting an alert, but why do they not update the MTA website when there are obvious problems? Why do I receive alerts at 3:00 in the afternoon for trains that are running 10 minutes late, even as few as *8* minutes behind. I take the 6:21 (a Ronkonkoma train) to Hicksville, and we are late all but 1 or 2 days per month. We all expect the 5 or so minutes, but oftentimes it is approaching 10 minutes, and we never get told either by the conductor, text/email, or the MTA website why. They need to work on informing us about trains we need to know about. It seems to me like they can't handle the number of delays, etc. of the peak trains. The MTA should test for bugs, because there certainly seems to be some.

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