UCSF Shuttle Bus Crash Puts Seat Belt Law Into Question

SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – This week’s deadly collision involving a University of California, San Francisco shuttle bus has left many questioning whether these larger vehicles should actually have seat belts.

“Seat belts are required in most vehicles other than a motor truck, a truck tractor or a bus,” said Tony Tam with the California Highway Patrol.

Tam said that the UCSF shuttle meets the definition of a bus, as it carries more than 10 people.

KCBS’ Margie Shafer Reports:

The accident occurred at the intersection of Octavia Boulevard and Oak Street early Thursday morning, when the shuttle bus collided with a big rig.

52-year-old UCSF Associate Professor Kevin Mack was killed after being ejected from the vehicle.

“When you look at airport shuttle buses, most of them don’t have seat belts cause they carry more than 10 passengers,” Tam said. “A Muni bus doesn’t need it because they also carry more than 10 passengers.”

But San Francisco Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi, whose district includes the Hayes Valley neighborhood where the accident occurred, still has questions.

“You would expect that especially coming from a medical institution, that that (seat belts) would be a requirement, at least one would hope so,” he said.

UCSF spokeswoman Elizabeth Fernandez said that the majority of the university’s 50 shuttles carry 22 passengers.

She said that the community is still reeling over the death of Mack.

“The accident was a terrible tragedy and we feel horrible about the accident itself and the people who were injured,” said Fernandez. “We lost a member of our family.”

The driver of the shuttle bus has been placed on administrative leave.

(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

More from Margie Shafer
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  • DW

    After seeing someone burn to death in their vehicle because they were traped by their seatbelt – I’ll take my chances without one.

    • sweet

      where did u see that DW?

    • egg

      The statistics show that’s your instinct in wrong. For everyone one person trapped by a seat belt, many more are saved.

      • DW

        I don’t care what the statistics say. I’d rather die being thrown around inside or out of a vehicle. Its not about survival, its about choosing not to die in the most horrible way I can imagine.

  • sweet

    My friend died that way back in feb ,he hit black ice and car flipped over and was trapped from seat belt and died from the carbon monoxide, cause his windows were up and his body burned from the the fire, and it took the police about two weeks to identify him by his teeth,cause he was burnt to a crisp

  • s

    I think the driving habits of the driver is a bigger concern now. Seat belts save lives in certain aspects, but it also comes with unintended results.

  • Norman

    Obey the law of driving at the speed limit is my concern. The blue van with sign UCSF on 80 car pool lane from Fairfield to SF is one that I am so concern every morning. It s fat and very bad attitude.

  • Pojja Thakur

    Transfer to the airport as a facility providing tours around the city. The route begins on the boat and go for the construction of a cruise that sails into the bay along the shores of the city, Tues Lions PIER 39

    SFO Airport Shuttle

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