It's back to Plan B for all who loved
the idea of a separate railroad car for cell phone users.
"After closer scrutiny, the railroad decided it was
impractical," Marjorie Anders, spokeswoman for the New York area
commuter line Metro-North, said Thursday.
The railroad, which serves New York's northern suburbs, said
Monday that it might designate separate cars for telephone talkers
because of complaints that they were shouting into their phones,
disturbing other riders' work, conversation or daydreams.
But even for the brief time the idea was under consideration,
the railroad knew it faced formidable obstacles free speech
issues, overcrowding, accessibility for the handicapped.
And a phone company attorney sarcastically suggested separate
cars for people with head colds, hair spray or cheap after-shave.
"It's just one of those things about modern society that we are
going to have to adjust to," Anders said.
One woman complained to the railroad after finding herself
surrounded by five people on cell phones. Another passenger
resorted to turning on a tape recorder in front of a lawyer who was
talking loudly to clients, telling the lawyer, "Your
attorney-client privilege is no longer privileged."