Cal/OSHA Cites BART for Safety Violations

The agency cited Bay Area Rapid Transit for a 2013 accident that killed two workers.

Cal/OSHA has cited Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) for willful serious safety violations that resulted in the death of two workers in 2013, according to a news release from the California Department of Industrial Relations. BART faces $210,000 in proposed fines.

The investigation completed by Cal/OSHA found that the two workers who were killed did not meet the qualifications needed to perform work near hazardous energized third rails. In addition, a trainee was at the controls when the accident occurred, while his trainer was seated in the passenger car where he could not view the track. Cal/OSHA also reported that BART's "simple approval" procedures for employees working on tracks were not followed and were inadequate.

The 2013 accident involved BART train 963, which was operating in automatic mode at more than 65 mph with an inexperienced operator-in-training controlling it. The operator-in-training's trainer could not see him from his seat. When the trainee saw workers on the tracks, he wasn't able to sound the horn and stop the train before hitting the workers.

BART indefinitely suspended use of its "simple approval" practice one day after the men were hit. It meant that employees working on or near tracks are responsible for their own safety, and one of the two workers who died should have been acting as a lookout.

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