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'Life And Death Matter:' Subway Riders Stranded On Hot, Dark F Train For 45 Minutes

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- Hundreds of commuters were stuck on a hot and dark F train when it suddenly stopped inside a tunnel Monday night.

The MTA says a power outage stalled the train, stranding riders in the dark, without air conditioning or ventilation, for about 45 minutes.

But for many, the ordeal felt a lot longer, CBS2's Scott Rapoport reported.

"This was a life and death matter. This needs to be taken extremely seriously," passenger Michael Sciaraffo said.

He said the F train got so hot, "people started sweating, people were taking their clothes off." He said some also felt faint.

The doors of the train were clouded with condensation and defiant messages, with one rider writing, "I will survive."

Sciaraffo said the worst part was not receiving information from train personnel about what was going on and when it would be over.

Ultimately, the train had to be pushed to the next station for passengers to exit, frantically prying at the doors to get out.

According to the Riders Alliance, a watchdog group, delays have nearly tripled in the past four years.

"It's just getting worse," deputy director of the group Nick Sifuentes said.

Some are pointing fingers at the man in charge of the MTA, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

The governor touted his 2nd Avenue subway project but stayed mum on the subway delays Tuesday.

"We need to ask Governor Cuomo, where are you? And what are you going to finally do about this?" Sifuentes said.

At a labor rally Tuesday, the governor would not speak to CBS2 about the subway, nor grant interview requests.

CBS2 also contacted the MTA, requesting an on-camera interview to discuss the F train trouble and what many say is an overall decline in service. The agency said in an email it is looking into why customers didn't get better communication from the train crew.

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