SF Supervisor Aboard Muni Train With Door Malfunction

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — A San Francisco supervisor was aboard a San Francisco Municipal Railway Muni Metro light-rail vehicle during a frightening incident Friday evening in which a door on the vehicle remained open as it sped through the subway tunnel.

Supervisor Scott Wiener was a passenger on the L-Taraval vehicle, which was traveling between the Van Ness and Church stations sometime after 6 p.m. with an open door on its right side.

“I thought I’d seen everything on Muni,” Wiener said.

The incident was caught on video—with the supervisor in the foreground—by a passenger who posted it to YouTube.

Wiener said as the train was about to depart the Van Ness station, “all the doors but one closed, and the train just went.”

Once the train was in the tunnel, the operator came on the intercom, Wiener said, and advised riders that the door was open and to stay away from it, but the video shows that most passengers remained right near the opening.

“There’s not a lot to be done,” he said. “We could put on the emergency brake, but then that could injure people.”

The door slid shut at one point but then slid open again during the trip to the Church Station, Wiener said.

The train arrived at the station, and all passengers were asked to clear the vehicle, he said.

Wiener said he contacted Muni senior management immediately after leaving the station to notify them of the incident.

He said he was later told by agency officials that the door was malfunctioning and that the operator failed to secure it.

Wiener said he had never seen that happen on a vehicle he was on, but “apparently now I’ve heard it has” happened elsewhere in the Muni system.

“It was one of those ‘Twilight Zone’ situations,” he said.

A Muni spokesperson was not immediately available to comment on
possible disciplinary action against the operator.

(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services may have contributed to this report.)

Comments

One Comment

  1. genomega1 says:

    “frightening incident”
    Did anyone look frightened to you?

  2. Vee Savage says:

    lol genomega1. Yahoo news called it a harrowing ride. They didn’t look harrowed to me either!

  3. Neena says:

    This happened to me 21 years ago. I was on the underground, standing near the door holding a newborn and a diaper bag–nobody would give me a seat–and the door flew open. It took 2 stops before anyone came to my aid. So this isn’t anything new. What is new is the ability to take a photo of it.

  4. Josh Stewart says:

    I don’t understand why the muni operator should face disciplinary action for something that the maintenance crew overlooked. Or perhaps the fleet of trains is so old that it should be properly inspected and/or replaced.

  5. GMT921 says:

    This also happened on the N-Judah line outbound past Church/Duboce the previous Friday, March 25, at around 2:15 p.m. The driver had to evacuate the vehicle and make us wait for the next one, which was pretty jammed, but everyone was OK.

  6. E.J.Washington says:

    My question is why did supervisor wiener wait til he got off the train to call muni, or he and any of the passengers push the emergency button or go up to the front and tell the operator that the door is open,as you can see on the video it like none of them gave a damn that the door was open

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