Those of us who make daily expeditions on the SRT have known, every winter, that operations get rather flaky once it gets cold and especially once there is a lot of snow. This year, the SRT stopped running in automatic mode around the start of February more or less when the major snowfalls came.
The first few weeks were a bit rocky with very long holds at stations as SRT control managed the trains by radio. Believe me, when the wind is howling through those stations, you don’t want to be sitting in a train with the doors open. (Of course, the SRT cars manage to have snowdrifts inside them even when the doors are closed, but that’s another matter.)
Later, the TTC seems to have figured out that running a line with six trains where the operator can easily see trains in front of them isn’t all that hard, and the quality of service improved quite a lot.
Finally, about last Wednesday (March 27), a miracle! A train pulls into Kennedy station without its marker lights flashing (the tell-tale sign of manual operation), and it behaves as if it is being run automatically.
I checked with the TTC to find out whether they had finally activated the new, replacement ATO system for Scarborough, but, no that won’t be ready or a few weeks yet, and they have revived the old one. The saddest part is that they never really needed it in the first place, but it’s a showcase for our technology, don’t ya know.