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LA Metro To Renovate Subway Cars Replacing Bed Bug Infested Fabric Seats With Plastic

—blogged by @lovelikejhoney

Imagine riding on the subway, minding your business, when a bedbug suddenly crawls off the Metro subway seat and onto your shorts. That was Chris Rusak’s last subway experience before he vowed to never sit on the bed bug infested seats again.

“Sometimes you’re tired, or you don’t feel good, and you just want to sit down. But you know what? It isn’t worth it,” Rusak told the L.A. Times.

The Los Angeles County Metro system plans to redesign the seats on subway cars, phasing out the fuzzy fabric seat coverings currently used on subway, rail and bus lines. Bob Spadafora, the Metro executive overseeing the change, tells the Los Angeles Times the fabric is like “a housing development for germs,” allowing them to fester and breed.

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Although Metro’s seats are cleaned regularly, on a system that carries more than 1.2 million trips per day, passengers unknowingly sit in an limitless collection of substances, including ants, bed bugs, blood, animal and human feces, lice, urine, spilled food and more.

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Vinyl will be used to replace the brightly patterned fabric that often conceals these safety hazards. The plastic-based fabrics will be installed on all subway cars, Metro says, because they are non-absorbent, cheaper to install and easier to keep clean. 

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Over the next six years, the seat change will occur on the Red and Purple lines, which represent a small fraction of the Metro system’s vehicles. The agency has no immediate plans to discard the upholstery on its 2,438 buses or four light-rail line; however, if the new subway seats are a success, the Gold Line could be next.

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Small town girl from Dirty Jerz.

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