SKOKIE — Friday marked the return of the Yellow Line as trains began to once again run between Skokie and Howard Station after a wreck on the tracks in November. Passengers on the northern CTA line were excited for the train’s return, but noted that the Yellow Line has seemed distant, sad and generally not the same since the accident.
“When the Yellow Line pulled into Oakton-Skokie this morning I couldn’t help but notice there was a pain behind its windscreens,” said Rita Collins, 34, a hairdresser in Evanston. “Far away, like they’re looking through you and into a happier past. My brother tore his ACL and it ruined his college football scholarship, he’d get the same way whenever someone would bring up Notre Dame.”
After colliding with a snow removal vehicle and injuring nearly forty passengers, changes have been made to how the Yellow Line will operate, including lowering the speed limit from fifty five to thirty five miles per hour.
“I heard someone on the platform say something like ‘good to have the Skokie Swift back,’” said Greg Watkaski, 48, a pharmacist, “come on, man, have a little tact. What if the Yellow Line heard you calling it by its nickname from the glory days?”
Despite the new regulations and a fresh pressure watch, riders on the Yellow Line reported feeling like the rail line might be rushing back into things. At least one rider reported hearing the door announcement whispering “pull it together, we can do this” before continuing to say which side the doors open at Howard.
“We made sure the Yellow Line was ready before reopening,” said Dorval Carter, president of the CTA, “we’re not in the business of rushing anything or anyone at the CTA. If they weren’t ready and wanted to keep the line closed for five years, I would let them! Honestly if the whole thing wants to shut down, I don’t give a fuck.”
Ready or not, the Yellow Line is back to full service between the two northern suburbs, and the ridership is returning and rejoicing that the line is ok, but a little more haunted and distant than before. As of press time there had only been one slight mishap when the Yellow Line saw a snow plow and briefly “freaked out” and tried to jump the tracks before the conductor was able to calm it down.
“It’s like a killer instinct kicked in,” said the driver, who preferred to remain anonymous, “Like the Yellow was looking for revenge...probably fine though! I get the same way when I hear fireworks!”