前回エントリで紹介したMITのジェフリー・ハリス論文に対してニューヨーク州都市交通局(Metropolitan Transportation Authority=MTA)が反論したようで、その内容がこちらの記事で紹介されている。

The MTA strongly disputes Harris's findings and points to another correlation with the COVID-19 data, namely Gov. Andrew Cuomo's stay-at-home order which went into effect on March 20.
"As everyone knows and as the author makes clear in his own report, correlation does not establish causation," said MTA Chief Communications Officer Abbey Collins.
"This study is flawed – period."


The MTA attacked my research article. It was just a lot of associations. Anyway, said an agency spokesperson, “correlation does not establish causation.” Forget that the crowding of passengers on station platforms and in subway cars served as an ideal environment for transmission of the virus. Forget that millions of standing passengers shared those smooth, metallic poles. Forget that we’re talking about the routine transmission of the virus from one end of the city to another and back again multiple times every day.
In my article, I suggested that when the MTA began to cut back on service, shutting down some lines and converting other express lines into local trains, the agency may have unintendedly kept the passenger density high and thus made things worse. I’m not sure that the MTA had an answer for this particular concern. The agency just said, “This study is flawed — period.”
I do not take umbrage. Science is about getting the facts right. Still, I interpret the word “period” to mean that, from the MTA’s viewpoint, the case has been closed. But it’s not closed. As we think seriously about gradually returning to normal life, we’d better think hard about the role of our public transport.