NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – At least three MTA employees have converted a storage room at the Grand Central Terminal into a “human cave”, according to an internal investigation.
They could be fired after the best kept secret in Grand Central was revealed.
Investigators found the so-called “human cave” under the tracks, hidden away from the noise and bustle of the busy hub.
According to the MTA Inspector General’s Office, the room had a sofa futon, a large flat-screen TV with streaming capabilities, a refrigerator, a microwave, air conditioning, exercise equipment and more – including an open beer can.
CONNECTION: Read the full report of the Inspector General (.pdf)
The inspector general’s report said the loosening staff included a calf driver, a carpenter and an electrician.
The MTA called it an unauthorized rest room hidden at the northern end of Route 144.
“The employees who were engaged are on night shifts, but this is an unauthorized resting place, unknown to their supervision and completely unacceptable, and behavior that is scandalous and something I am very angry about,” said Catherine Rinaldi, president of Metro. -North.
Rinaldi says it was a back room in a locksmith’s warehouse.
“It’s just completely inappropriate, unacceptable use of their time,” she said.
The inspector general says he made a surprise visit to the warehouse in August 2019 after Metro-North employees did not investigate complaints about workers using the space to “hang out and get drunk and party.”
CONNECTED: Behind the scenes of the Grand Central Terminal
The MTA said that as soon as the room was opened, they checked hundreds of doors, hundreds of offices to make sure there was no other room like it. They found nothing else.
“Many New Yorkers have fantasized about kicking a cold beer in a first-class piece of real estate in Manhattan – especially near good transportation,” said MTA Inspector General Carolyn Pocorney. “But few would have the guts to command a secret room under the Grand Central Terminal and make it their own human cave, maintained with MTA resources and maintained at the expense of our riders.”
Investigators say the three MTA employees denied being in the room, but on the day they left their fingerprints.
They also left cash receipts, streaming devices, personal calendars and exercise equipment.
Investigators were told there were “sensitive supplies” in the room.
PHOTOS: See The Cave of Man
Travelers who say they’ve done a grim service for years say it’s true, shame on them
“They’re hanging out and they should be working, that’s not fair,” a traveler told CBS2’s Jessica Leighton.
“We pay money to get the job done right, and you’re hanging around, just chilling. That’s not cool, “said another traveler.
The three workers were fired without pay.
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