June 15, 2012

BART fire haults service

OAKLAND, Calif. — A fire in West Oakland forced a shutdown of the Bay Area Rapid Transit District’s (BART) Transbay Tube, creating a struggle for commuters to get around, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

The incident occurred at approximately 2:15 a.m. when a blaze in a building under construction near the West Oakland Station damaged electrical and communications systems on the elevated BART tracks and forced the transit agency to cancel Transbay service just hours before the start of the morning commute. Limited service was restored at about 3:45 p.m. For the full story, click here.

AC Transit buses made more than 117 extra trips to and from San Francisco in response to the fire.

The supplemental bus service provided vital connections to several key BART stations throughout the day, but especially during the morning and afternoon rush hours, according to AC officials.

“It was a tall order to first understand what needed to be done and then come up with a good strategy for doing it,’’ said AC Transit GM David Armijo. “ To re-arrange our entire service in way to get extra buses to alleviate the Transbay crisis without severely hampering the rest of our system was extremely challenging. I thank staff for rising to the occasion.”

In addition to the buses and carefully crafted route changes, the agency’s customer service call center responded to over 800 calls requesting assistance. Likewise, supervisors and other staff provided customer information to thousands of other riders who were displaced from their normal BART routine and unfamiliar with bus services.

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