April 23, 2014

BART fined $200K in track workers’ deaths

Eric Fischer via Wikimedia Commons

Eric Fischer via Wikimedia Commons

SAN FRANCISCO — The AP reported that the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) fined Bay Area Rapid Transit District (BART) $210,000 over the deaths of two track workers who were killed by a train on Oct. 19 that officials said was operated by an inexperienced driver with inadequate supervision.

Cal/OSHA officials told the AP that a high-ranking manager who was supposed to be instructing the driver of the fast-moving train was not in the cab with the trainee when the incident occurred.

Cal/OSHA cited the rail agency for "willful serious safety violations" because the manager "was not located in a position to closely view the trainee's actions and observe the track" before the train hit Christopher Sheppard, a BART engineer, and Laurence Daniels, a rail consultant.   

The transit system has since changed its rules. It now requires trains to slow down, stop or change course as they approach track workers and has implemented new communication protocols. For the full story, click here.

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