|Photo from DC Metro People|
Here's your first tip. If you find yourself on one of those cars, switch cars at the next stop. Most of the time it's just one car that's having issues, not the entire train. Place yourself at an end door so that at the next stop you can hop out of that car and into an adjacent one. You probably won't be the only one doing this.
But there are a few clues to help you spot these cars before you get in. If a train pulls into the station and there's a car that's unusually empty, especially if the car to the front or back of it looks more crowded, it may be a problem with the air. Also, look for people fanning themselves with newspapers or whatever they're holding. In this heat with the air not working, it'll be at least half the people in the car fanning themselves for relief. Finally, if you see a group rush to get off that car only to walk over to the next car, save yourself the trouble and follow them to a better car.
In heat like this in a system known for maintenance problems and broken trains, try to carry a bottle of water with you. You never know where or when you'll get stuck, and as we saw this week on MARC, you never know how long it'll be.
Share your tips below.