Maribel Rivera. CMA. Car maintainer. I’m a welder at Transit, and I’ve been working here for 20 years. Some of the things I work on are, like, door operator arms, the linkage that goes on the door, it’s a very important part of the train. Welding has to be done precisely in order to keep those doors safely opening and closing so no body gets hurt. I also work on parts that have come to me in an emergency and they need to go out right away to be replaced on the trains that are going out. So it’s a challenge to me. And I like a challenge. Welding is so important to New York City Transit because everything is made out of metal. There are certain parts that have wear on them that we have to refurbish. We can’t just buy new parts because no one makes them. So we fabricate many parts, and there’s always repairs to be made, and we need experienced, high-end welders that can do any kind of welding. I have to create a safe product. A solid weld with no contaminations or impurities where that weld will stand vibrations from the train, and keep the ridership safe. It’s pretty detailed work. And that’s what I like about welding. I would say that the welders we have at New York City Transit are among the finest in the city. Our welders from this shop – 207th Street Overhaul Shop – they’ve cut trains out of tunnels. They were at the World Trade Center site working on the scrap heap. I go to bed at night knowing that we have the best the city has to offer in a very difficult and a very important role. By presenting a good product, a safe product, I’m able to help Transit keep trains moving, and the ridership safe. It just makes me proud that I’m able to be an important part of Transit.