SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS)_ After a series of mechanical breakdowns this week, Caltrain will put a mechanic on-board the recently repaired trains.

Caltrain is perplexed over the string of incidents where five separate breakdowns on Thursday and Friday appear unrelated according to Caltrain spokeswoman Christine Dunn.

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The mechanics will ride just-repaired trains to ensure the fix was complete, said Dunn.

“Unfortunately this was just Murphy’s Law knocking on the door,” added the spokeswoman.

All five breakdowns were different, ranging from a broken compressor, to a failed communication line and stubborn oil light.  Hundreds of passengers were affected by delays of up to about an hour.

“For the last 10 days before this all happened, we had 100 percent on-time performance,” added Dunn.

Dunn offered an apology but not free vouchers.

Comments (6)
  1. Frank says:

    What sort of delusional people work in Caltrain’s PR department? 100% on time the previous 10 days? seems to disagree, but it’s only written by people who actually ride the train, you know? They wouldn’t have any vested interest in the train they are riding on being on time.

  2. Matt says:

    That 100% ontime claim is a complete lie. I’ve ridden Caltrain each weekday for the last 2 years and have never had an problem-free week with Caltrain, and that 10 day period was no exception and proves it.

  3. Chris says:

    “For the last 10 days before this all happened, we had 100 percent on-time performance,” added Dunn.”
    Wow, I guess I must not have been on the 100% of trains that were on time.
    No wonder Caltrain sucks, with people like Dunn incapable of getting proper feedback about Caltrain performance.

    For anybody who doubts Caltrain is terrible,

  4. Frank says:

    I think that the constant breakdowns and delays are bad enough, but they’re even worse when you consider the complete ineptitude of Caltrain Ops/Management/PR, who don’t communicate information about train delays, who don’t seem to have any semblance of a backup plan for when things go bad, and who claim that any Caltrain runs 100% on time.

    I hate to say it, but it’s the beginning of the end for Caltrain. I’ve stopped using Caltrain as my primary commute method because it is completely unreliable and poorly scheduled. With the service cuts they are threatening, they won’t help themselves at all. Maybe the whole “stickin’ it to the customer” philosophy wasn’t so successful after all?

    1. Frank says:

      Also, yet more laughable, Caltrain claims to have been >94% on time last year:

  5. Matt says:

    Caltrain regularly has a train break down. In the first half of 2009 there was about 1 breakdown a week. I called Caltrain customer service to find out if that was average or they were having a bad year, and the phone rep didn’t know. By the summer (around this same time) it wasn’t uncommon to have multiple breakdowns in a single day. I tried to write to ask they made reliability a agenda item and track reliability by other metrics (e.g. only commute-hour trains, to gauge how often a regular commuter sees) and basically got stonewalled by the caltrain staff.

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