Secret NY minute: trains late by design

October 17, 2009 6:41:15 PM PDT
Commuters using the Metro-North Railroad are learning a secret: Every train leaves Manhattan's Grand Central Terminal a minute late. A railroad spokewoman says the delays are done intentionally to give stragglers a few extra seconds to make their train.

Metro-North operates about 900 trains a day to New York's northern suburbs.

Spokeswoman Marjorie Anders says the added minute for departures has been in place for decades. It is even included in internal timetables seen only by employees.

The rail service cautions that the grace period is voluntary.

Train conductors may depart at the posted time if the platform is clear of passengers.

At all other stops, the public timetable holds.

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Information from: The New York Times, http://www.nytimes.com

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