Leave something on a city train, bus or the Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) and you can probably wave goodbye to it forever. Poor recordkeeping, inadequate storage facilities, weak security measures and more abuses by MTA officials and workers have pretty much seen to that. According to Inspector General Barry Kluger’s recent report, of 8,000 items that were reported lost and turned in, only 18% were ever returned to their rightful owners! Many items never make it to the pickup office at Penn Station. Other facts from this document were equally appalling.
NYC Transit has supposedly instituted many of the recommendations from this report to improve the custodial care and to ensure the safe return of rider’s lost goods. We’ll believe their assurances, if and when we see them produce better statistics. In the meantime, “hold on tightly to your belongings, riders!” MTA employees might be more dangerous than the thief riding next to you. In the words of Bette Davis, "Fasten your seatbelts, it's going to be a bumpy night!"