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Metra's board yesterday approved a three-month pilot program allowing small pets in carriers on the system's weekend Rock Island Line trains.The idea for the trial program came from a petition presented to the agency asking staff to consider allowing small pets on trains, Metra officials said in a press release. The commuter railroad also conducted a survey of riders and found that most riders supported the plan.The pilot is slated to begin July 4.Pet carriers cannot take up seats or obstruct pathways on trains or in stations, and tmust be small enough to be carried by a single person. They must fit on a rider's lap or under the seat at all times.Metra arrived at these and other rules by following guidelines other agencies have implemented for similar programs.After the three-month experiment, Metra will assess how it worked and determine "whether and how to proceed," officials said.Service animals are allowed on all Metra trains at all times.
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