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File #: 2017-0745   
Type: Informational Report Status: Agenda Ready
File created: 10/23/2017 In control: Ad Hoc Customer Experience Committee
On agenda: 11/16/2017 Final action:
Title: RECEIVE AND FILE the update on Metro Operations cleanliness efforts.
Sponsors: Operations (Department)
Indexes: Cleaning, Cleanliness (Graffiti Abatement), Elevators, Graffiti, Informational Report, Maintenance, Maintenance facilities, Maintenance practices, Metro Divisions, Metro Orange Line, Mitigation, Odors, Quality assurance, Railroad commuter service, Railroad facilities, Rolling stock, Safety, Security, State Of Good Repair, System safety, Testing, Vehicle fleets
Attachments: 1. Presentation - Cleanliness Report



NOVEMBER 16, 2017






ACTION:                     RECEIVE AND FILE






RECEIVE AND FILE the update on Metro Operations cleanliness efforts.





This report is in response to the Board of Director’s request for an update on bus and rail fleet vehicles and facilities cleanliness.


Operations strive to provide transit service that is safe, reliable, and clean. Several cleanliness efforts are in place to ensure that our vehicles, stations, facilities and Metro property meet Metro cleanliness standards.


Fleet Vehicles Cleaning

Metro buses and rail vehicles are cleaned daily by removing interior dirt and debris, wiping down dashes and ledges, mopping floors, removing graffiti, cleaning the operators’ area and washing the exterior of the buses and trains. Bus vehicle detailed cleanings known as “scrubs” are completed every 6,000 miles. Scrubs include all of the daily cleaning activities plus more thorough washing/wiping of interior surfaces and ceilings, removing gum deposits in crevices around seats and cleaning every window. Special cleaning projects and/or campaigns occur regularly to focus on improving specific interior and exterior conditions including bus wheel cleaning, removing scuffing and scrapes, and focused cleaning of doors, seats, and railings.

Stations and Facilities Cleaning

Metro heavy rail stations are cleaned at a minimum of three times per day and light rail and Orange Line stations are cleaned a minimum of twice per day. Cleaning routines include trash removal, sweeping, dusting and wiping surfaces, mopping, and odor mitigation. Heavy rail stations are auto-scrubbed a minimum of five times per week and every rail and Orange Line station is pressure washed at least once per week and as needed. Contracted services are also an important component of our cleanliness efforts and include:

                     Graffiti removal performed daily Monday-Friday and on an as-needed basis

                     Glass & stainless steel anti-graffiti film inspection and replacement are performed on a monthly cycle

                     Landscape maintenance services including weed abatement and trash removal are performed weekly or twice-per-month depending on the location

                     Weekly trash removal and quarterly weed abatement services are performed at Metro stations 

                     Right-of-Way herbicide application is performed on a quarterly basis to keep weeds down

                     Power sweeping is performed three times per week, weekly, and twice per month based on need from experience and location

                     Glass replacement and fencing repairs are performed on an as-needed basis in response to vandalism and other type of incidents


Cleanliness Goals and Quality Control

Safety, service, reliability and cleanliness are all priority Operations goals. Clean and well-maintained transit stops, stations, facilities, and vehicles improve the general public’s perception of Metro and enhance transit as a viable mode of travel that is high quality, comfortable, convenient, and efficient. Cleanliness and physical environment are important elements that impact how our customers measure security when riding our system. To ensure that we are measuring, tracking and trending our efforts around cleanliness, Metro’s Quality Assurance team evaluates nineteen categories for bus (12 interior related and 7 exterior related) and fourteen categories for rail. Vehicles are inspected and scored on a 1 to 10 point scale, with 10 being best. In addition, we have a formal Rail Station Cleanliness Program that inspects all rail stations, Orange Line Stations and Silver Line stations. Some of their efforts include the following:


                     For bus and rail vehicles, cleanliness inspections are performed prior to the morning roll-out when all buses and rail vehicles inspected have been cleaned and serviced

                     Categories of bus cleanliness inspections include dashboards, operator’s area, transom/ledges, ceiling/vents, seat frames, seat inserts, windows, sacrificial windows, doors, floor, gum, interior graffiti, window etching, water spotting, exterior cleanliness, exterior graffiti, wheels, exterior body condition, front/rear bumper condition

                     Cleanliness ratings are part of division Key Performance Indicators reported monthly

                     All deficiencies are reported to management with recommendations for improvement

                     Facilities Maintenance Managers, Supervisors, Leaders and other team members perform daily and routine system-wide station inspections at our locations to ensure that cleanliness standards are met, and to identify  potentially new or unforeseen challenges

                     Cleanliness inspections are performed on a monthly basis by Quality Assurance staff at eleven Metro bus divisions, including three Contracted Bus Service divisions, and 5 rail divisions.

                     The point scale for all inspections is:  10 to 8 - Satisfactory; 7 to 4 - Conditional; 3 to 1 - Unsatisfactory

                     Metro’s goal is to achieve an 8  or better for all cleanliness inspections


Improvements to our Cleanliness/Maintenance Efforts

Operations is committed to continuous improvement in all that we do. Cleanliness is one of our top priorities. We are committed to enhancing our cleanliness/maintenance efforts by strategically allocating adequate resources to the areas and work units that maintain, clean, and assess the performance and appearance of our entire system. Operations have several programs that review, audit, report on and manage the maintenance and cleanliness of our assets and rolling-stock to ensure that they are in good working order, are safe, are reliable and in a satisfactory State of Good Repair. Operations is committed to identifying and addressing root cause issues as a proactive means to improve cleanliness. Operations continuously works toward improving response times to perform ‘special clean-ups’ which have become more frequent and prevalent. Lastly, Operations will continue to partner with our Security and Law Enforcement staff to address challenges such as homelessness and transients who frequently utilize our system and may create safety hazards on our property and assets for those who use and those who work to keep our system clean and hygienic.


Elevator Cleanliness

Elevators and escalators are cleaned daily as part of our station cleaning. One of our challenges has been urination/defecation inside our elevators and the odors that persist even after cleaning. Operations tested various cleansers and odor mitigation products over the last two decades. While continuously searching for improved products, equipment, and processes for evaluation, our Rail Facilities Maintenance staff discovered a chemical originally used in landfills. This product was tested at several problem locations and proved to be superior to anything we utilized prior. The positive results led to introducing the product system-wide. In addition to the improvements with odor control, this product also eliminates Hepatitis A, B, and C. We are now using this product daily on our elevators. 

Another improvement to combat odors, in coordination with and support of Metro in-house custodial cleaning services, all elevator pits are power washed and deodorized twice per year since November 2016 when the latest Vertical Transportation maintenance contract began.  This year, as of March 2017, an elevator floor/platform replacement program started with new coved flooring installations designed to improve unit appearance, cleanliness and physically mitigate liquid seepage beneath the floor and into the pits which typically results in bad odors and an acceleration of corrosion which in turn shortened equipment life. To-date, 19 elevator floors have been upgraded to the coved floors.




Metro’s efforts to meet our network cleanliness standards will have a positive impact on our service reliability, cleanliness efforts, and the overall level of safety our customers experience on our system.





This item will not have a financial impact on Metro’s existing budget.





In the short term, Metro recognizes opportunities to improve the customer experience.  As Metro strives to improve cleanliness effort throughout the system, Operations will continue to seek out innovative approaches and partnerships with technical experts for how to improve cleanliness as we expand and enhance our network and deliver transportation service that is safe, reliable, clean and world-class.



Prepared by:                      Christopher Limon, Sr. Director, Facilities Maintenance, (213)922-6637

Errol Taylor, Sr. EO, Maintenance & Engineering, (213) 922-3227

Matt Dake, Sr. Director, Equipment Maintenance, (213) 922-5797



Reviewed by:                      James T. Gallagher, Chief Operations Officer, (213) 418-3108