Your Views: Lengthy bus idling poses serious health issue

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A city travel alternative, which will be financed by city and state funding, is enhanced DASH service during the Metro closure. (File photo)
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To the editor:

During the construction on the bus depot at the King Street Metro, WMATA and DASH buses pick up and drop off on both sides of Dangerfield Road – and use the area as a holding zone. We at the Metropolitan Condo on Dangerfield and Prince streets are living at the bus depot.

Starting at 5 a.m. on many days and into the late evening hours, buses are idling for extended periods of time – up to an hour. WMATA’s code requires no more than three minutes of idling. The noise and emissions concern and disturb our residents – not to mention the cost of fuel.

We contacted city council in January 2019 and have continued to contact city officials – and sometimes talked to the drivers directly to stop the bus idling – with no action.

We ask that city council act to enforce the code. We want the Transportation Department to instruct all bus drivers about city regulations and to enforce the law. We would like a sign on the sidewalk reminding drivers not to idle the buses for more than three minutes.

With the Metro shutdown, we have shuttle buses, city buses and trolleys all idling on Dangerfield, Diagonal and King streets. If the city is serious about Eco-Alexandria, climate change as well as its residents’ quality of life, city council will take immediate action to reduce emissions and enforce city codes.

-R. M. Esber, Alexandria

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