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MBTA Offers $30 An Hour To Shovel Out Tracks

BOSTON (CBS) -- It's all hands on deck in Boston to get public transportation up and running again after another record-setting snowstorm.

The MBTA says it will provide a limited schedule of rail and bus service on Tuesday.  The transportation agency also announced Monday that it will regularly update the public in an effort to improve its communications.

"As we navigate through this challenging winter, we will inform the public with consistent daily updates to keep the lines of communication open and allow Bay Staters to plan ahead as much as possible," MBTA General Manager Dr. Beverly Scott said in a public statement.

Scott also said Monday that it could take 30 days for the transit system to return to normal service.

A mixture of union workers, students and others just looking to make some extra cash are shoveling MBTA tracks, WBZ-TV's Nicole Jacobs reports. The MBTA is paying $30 an hour to workers who help clear the snow.

About 50 inmates from the Department of Correction are also helping to shovel, the MBTA said.

The transit system shut down completely on Sunday for the storm that dumped 16.2 inches of snow in the city, and rail and bus lines were operating on a limited schedule Monday.


Workers shoveling out the Red Line Monday (Photo credit MBTA)

A spokesman for the MBTA said buses are shuttling shovelers from the Bayside Expo Center at UMass Boston to help dig out the Braintree branch of the Red Line.

CHECK: MBTA Service Schedule

"I know that the commuters need to get out and go to work and I wanted to make some money today," said shoveler Caitlyn Lowe.

Workers clear Red Line tracks of snow and ice near Water Street in Quincy. (Photo credit MBTA)

Extreme cold and historic levels of snow have crippled the nation's oldest transit system.  Shuttles have been substituting for Red Line trains on the Braintree branch for several days after snow and ice cut power to the third rail.

On Tuesday, service will be available on the Red Line from Alewife to Andrew Stations with limited substitute bus service on the Ashmont and Braintree branches.

Read: Beverly Scott To Resign As Head Of MBTA

Last week, Red Line riders had to be evacuated from a disabled train in Quincy during a snowstorm.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030's Kim Tunnicliffe reports: 

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