LIRR Weekend Booze Ban Starts Tonight

By Ben Fractenberg on May 18, 2012 1:37pm | Updated on May 18, 2012 4:31pm

The Long Island Railroad will ban alcoholic beverages on trains and platforms weekend nights.
The Long Island Railroad will ban alcoholic beverages on trains and platforms weekend nights.
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DNAinfo/Ben Fractenberg

NEW YORK CITY — Prohibition is making a comeback on the Long Island Rail Road starting this weekend.

The railroad will no longer allow alcohol on trains weekend late nights "in an effort to maintain orderly travel," a statement on the agency's website said. Alcoholic beverages are no longer allowed on trains and train platforms between midnight and 5 a.m. Friday and Saturday nights.

"That's horrible. It's half the reason I like Friday on the LIRR," said Spencer Gershenson, 24, who commutes daily from Merrick to Penn Station.

"There's more crazy people during the day," he added. "Drunk people are usually just passed out."

After two LIRR conductors were assaulted in March, a task force was formed to look at reducing disruptive behavior on weekend overnight trains, according to a MTA spokesman.

The group found that alcohol-fueled fare disputes and misbehavior was taking place regularly on some of the lines.

Commuters can still enjoy a drink after work, but should not take their beer on a train after midnight, even if it's in a brown bag, as there will be an increased police presence at Penn Station and throughout the LIRR system to enforce the new regulation, according to the MTA.

Another commuter said she noticed boorish behavior on her train after sporting events.

"After the basketball game or hockey there's a lot of drunk people," said Jin Donghao, 26, who lives in Valley Stream and takes the train three or four times a week to Penn Station. "Sometimes they are loud, but it's not bad, it's funny."

The MTA started posting signs around Penn Station alerting LIRR riders about the weekend night booze ban.
The MTA started posting signs around Penn Station alerting LIRR riders about the weekend night booze ban.
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DNAinfo/Ben Fractenberg

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