Not long after writing a post over at The Sixth Ward about the new 5000 series rail cars that have started their passenger runs at select times on the CTA Red Line. There isn't much to this ride and I didn't notice much of a difference as far as riding as opposed to the other trains that run on the CTA. What'll take some getting used to is the new amenities on these new trains.
For instance instead of hearing your next stop announced on the train, you can also see it on LED displays. Just over the LED destination signs are maps of the L system where lights will identify the next stop. While the automated announcements will still be played on these new trains there are new bells that alert you to the fact that the doors are closing. Also most of the seats on the train are facing the aisle just like they would be in the New York subway with the idea being that these cars could cram more passengers on the train that the ones currently in regular service. Finally if the train is ever dark there are glowing strips throughout that car as well.
Anyway I would have to ride these trains more often to be able to say for certain if there's much of a difference between the new rail cars and the older rail cars.
BTW, it was on these new cars that I witnessed a delay due to an unauthorized person on the tracks. For an interesting change I was actually riding on the very first car of the train and one of the CTA supervisors opened one of the doors and yelled out. That person came towards the train and our motorman told this man to beware of the electrified third rail as he climbed onto the train.
I thought worse case scenario is that I could've have witnessed a man's electrocution today. That would've have ruined my day for certain! I already wrote about seeing the after effects of a woman's suicide after jumping from 95th onto the Dan Ryan and being hit by a vehicle. If I had actually seen that, it would've ruined my day as well.
Thankfully no one was hurt!
I hope that when possible to post pictures of any future rides on these cars in the near future. Today I just didn't want to get caught with a camera since I was on the first car and there were quite a few CTA personnel on board, especially two CTA supervisors.