Rail commuters could finally relax Thursday after hearing that the LIRR union and MTA agreed on a contract -- just three days before a potential strike.
"I had adjusted my entire schedule so all my meetings were this week," said Nancy Akeson from Garden City. Akeson usually commutes to Manhattan twice a week but came in four times this week in an attempt to avoid any conflicts a strike may have caused.
"I am feeling relieved," laughed Akeson, an office administrator who found out that the strike was averted while waiting for a train on Thursday. "It will be a light week at the office next week!"
Other commuters felt similarly, as they realized their upcoming workweek had suddenly become hassle free.
"It would have been a massive problem," said Jennifer Pinnata, an office manager from Stony Brook. "I have an interview scheduled early for the beginning of the week and I probably would have had to turn it down. There's no way I would have driven into the city."
Pinnata also has friends visiting whose trips most likely would have been compromised if LIRR workers walked off the job Sunday.
"How would they have gotten to Long Island?" she said. "It would have been impossible. I'm just relieved."
Gov. Andrew Cuomo's announcement that the MTA and union agreed on a dealcame just in time for the weekend, when many New Yorkers will be relying on the LIRR to get to and from vacation homes in Fire Island and the Hamptons.
"It's good news," said Bob Bullard,a CPA who commutes from Lido Beach, "It's good news for everyone."