Updated at 4:27 p.m. May 4

While the MBTA has been under intense scrutiny over mishaps and accidents involving its trains and tracks, two recent incidents involving objects falling on platforms have raised questions over the conditions of the stations themselves — and who is responsible for inspecting them to ensure safety.

MBTA Advisory Board chair Brian Kane told GBH News that “such inspections would be the purview of the engineering and maintenance department, which is part of the chief engineer’s division. Along with them, there are so-called 'line chiefs' for each rail line that are supposed to also have oversight responsibility for all aspects of their lines."

When asked if there are regularly scheduled inspections of stations, Kane said he wasn't sure, but that there should be.

"There are employees on the payroll called 'track walkers' who are supposed to inspect sections of track and stations on a regular basis," he said. "What likely happened with the [utility box] that fell is that no one saw it as their responsibility to check it. So, no one did."

In response to inquiries by GBH News, MBTA spokesperson Joe Pesaturo confirmed: "Station maintenance is primarily the responsibility of MBTA Engineering & Maintenance, which performs regularly scheduled inspections. It is a daily routine for MBTA personnel to visually inspect each station for any signs of maintenance needs. When a maintenance need or any type of deficiencies are observed, personnel report these issues to the MBTA’s maintenance control center for further evaluation or repair work orders are issued. The MBTA also has a Systemwide Station Assessment Program that assesses 8-to-10 stations per year. These inspections are used to inform the FTA-required Asset Management Plan to perform condition assessments for every station over a four year period and report the results to FTA."

And in response to the latest incidents at Harvard Station, Pesaturo said the transit agency launched a new program.

"This year, the MBTA commenced a new Overhead Inspection Program. Every station will be subjected to visual inspections followed by a more comprehensive, hands-on inspection after the removal of overhead panels," he explained. "Having recently completed the removal of all of the ceiling tiles at Harvard Station, the next phase of the corrective action plan is about to begin. Third-party engineering professionals will perform a thorough, hands-on inspection of the entire overhead structure, identify leaks that need to be sealed and make recommendations on any other repairs that are warranted."

The two recent incidents occurred just two months apart, both at Harvard station.

On March 1, a 25-pound acoustic ceiling tile fell, narrowly missing a woman walking along the platform. At the time, T officials said the tile fell because the metal supports holding the tile up had corroded.

In the latest incident Monday, a 200-pound metal box slid down a column it was attached to when a metal support brace gave way. The brace struck a woman standing nearby, causing minor injuries. The metal brace was found to be corroded due to moisture. While it is unknown when the box was last inspected, it appears to have not been in use for some 10 years.

In a statement, the T said “[t]he box that became dislodged was part of a 2011 pilot program led by the MIT Lincoln Laboratory, and funded by the Department of Homeland Security, to house sensors capable of detecting and identifying biological agents.”

The statement went on to say that the pilot program ended in 2013, and that the 14 boxes installed as part of the program at Harvard, Davis and Porter stations had remained in place despite no longer serving any function.

MBTA General Manager Phillip Eng has since directed T workers to remove all the boxes.

This story was updated to include comment from MBTA spokesperson Joe Pesaturo.