HR Strange But True!
June 07, 2007

If you want white-collar and blue-collar workers to unite, just try taking away the cocktail hour they enjoy on the train ride home after a long day's work.

When the Metropolitan Transportation Authority in New York proposed a ban on alcohol on the trains and platforms of the Long Island and Metro-North railroads, thousands of blue-collar and white-collar workers objected, the New York Times reports.

The commuters fought the proposal by signing petitions and writing to the authority. Their campaign looks like it will be a successful one. The MTA is set to ditch the plan to ban the commuters' cocktail hour, the newspaper reports.

Currently, commuters can purchase a drink before they board their homeward bound trains at Grand Central Terminal. The bartenders are employed by Metro-North railroad. Some trains on the New Haven line of Metro-North also have bar cars.

"It's one of the things that makes this slog north or east palatable," Richard Shea, who enjoys a Bud Light during his commute home from work, tells the newspaper.

Who wanted to bring an end to commuters' cocktail hour? Mitchell H. Pally, a board member from Long Island , suggested the ban because of concerns over liability for a commuter who drives after drinking on the train, the newspaper reports.

How much drinking goes on during the cocktail hour? Well, police tell the newspaper that while there were 994 cases of extreme drunkenness requiring medical attention last year on the Long Island and Metro-North railroads, almost all of those cases involved individuals who had done a bulk of their drinking before boarding the train.

Source: New York Times

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