Injury on a K Outbound Stops MUNI Metro Traffic – Live Report

Loyal Reader and blogger friend Melissa just called me a few minutes ago to report on a rather critical accident on a K-Outbound line that’s stalled MUNI traffic downtown.
According to Melissa, an elderly gentleman got on at Embarcadero on a K-Outbound line, and the train (which as we know in the tunnel is controlled by computer, NOT the operator) made a very sudden stop, just at the moment that said gentleman’s hand was not attached to any handle or bar and he fell down, possibly injuring or breaking his hip. There was a 20 minute wait for the paramedics to show up and move him to safety upstairs. The operator apparently was trying to help as best they could, but got a little grief from patrons, not realizing that machines control the trains in the tunnel (which many people might not be aware of, we’re not all transit nerds like me).
As of right now (7:40pm) paramedics and first responders were just about to get him onto a gurney and to safety. OK as I’m writing this and now as of of 7:43pm I just got a text from Melissa that the trains are moving, but delays should be expected.
I think that as we go about our weekends we should hope that said passenger is OK, and be aware there will be some delays for a while as MUNI gets back up to speed.
Thanks to Melissa for her eyewitness account…it’s just sad that anyone gets injured on public transit, and more sad that writing about SF transit means talking about mayhem and injuries on said system. If this mayhem, death, and crap continues, I’m quitting, because I didn’t start this to write the “let’s all talk about people getting hurt and killed blog.”
PS: You can read the rest of Melissa’s evening, delayed by the K line, over at Beth Spotswood’s awesome blog. It’s quite a small world here in SF blog land.

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6 Responses to Injury on a K Outbound Stops MUNI Metro Traffic – Live Report

  1. Alex says:

    The auto control controls SOME of the trains. Look at The trains with white or yellow letters attached are NOT on auto control.
    Ever waited for maybe a few minutes before the train got moving? Chances are the operator had to fight with the auto control to get the train moving again. The train after this K was most certainly NOT on ATCS when the operator moved it forward at a frightening pace and slammed on the brakes to allow people to board. Unless someone actually saw *some* indication that the train in question was in auto mode, I’d damn well be holding the driver accountable. Considering how fast some of these operators whip around turns, having an operator stop the train suddenly enough to knock someone over is hardly out of the question.
    As for the sudden braking under auto control, MUNI has known about this problem since the ATCS system was introduced! They’ve been working on a fix called EBALD (I can’t make these things up). Google “ebald breda” or “ebald muni”. Suffice to say we’ve had these piece of crap trains for over ten years, and they STILL HAVE NOT worked the bugs out of the brakes. I hope this guy sues MUNI.
    Of course the real tragedy is that it took the EMTs 15+ minutes to arrive on the scene. Absolutely horrendous.

  2. Greg Dewar says:

    ya know if this keeps up, and this blog becomes a recounting of tragedies, I’m done. I didn’t get into this to recount sad situations like this and what’s amazing to me is how MUNI the Mayor and the Board of Supervisors and the MTA simply don’t care.

  3. Be_Devine says:

    I ride the K,L,M, or T every day from Castro to Montgomery. Twice in the last week the train has slammed to a sudden halt in the tunnel. While people have been stunned, the two instances I experienced left everyone in one piece.
    What they heck is going on?

  4. Alex, you are totally right. I could not believe how long it took for help! Thank goodness the man was not stabbed or something.
    Thanks for the shout, Greg!

  5. Greg Dewar says:

    anytime, Melissa! some day I would like to find a way to take a day’s worth of blog postings from around town and ID where everyone’s day intersected in a sort of robert altman/charles dickens/LOST kind of way.
    or something. something worthy of a grant from some rich folk who wanna invest in “the arts.”

  6. James says:

    I was there on the platform and it took the paramedics well over 30 minutes to arrive at the Montgomery station. I was beginning to think that this response time was inexcusable, until I got to chatting with someone else who had to leave his motorcycle by the Pyramid. Apparently someone had thrown a package claimed to be a bomb into the Scientology building, so the area was cordoned off and required most of the emergency responders. This guy had to leave his bike, walk to Muni then get stuck with the rest of us waiting for said paramedics to secure the guy who was injured by the Muni train.
    I read so many library books thanks to Muni.

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