BART Plans For Possible Second Strike

With BART workers possibly going on strike again in early August, the transit agency is looking at running limited service with retired train operators. Phil Matier reports.

If that happened, I would urge the union members to vote to take away retiree medical care from anyone who returns to BART. Anyone who started before the 1990s did not pay into Medicare so is ineligible to get it and relies on BART continuing retiree health coverage, which is a benefit negotiated by the Union.

Those of us who started later are paying Medicare tax and required to take it. I could care less about retiree medical and would absolutely vote for a contract that took it away. New employees can't even retire until 67 so they have no use for it, either.

This is a no brainer. If BART's ex employees screw its current employees, then we should return the favor.

Only two of the 16 Paris Metro lines have trains which can be considered fully unattended.

Paris Metro Line 1

Paris Metro Line 14

One of the additional safety features considered to be necessary for unattended systems is platform edge doors because there is less ability to stop the train in time if someone falls off the platform onto the track. Platform edge doors add another element that can cause show stopping failure.

Paris Metro Line 14 Incidents

"Travellers have been largely satisfied with Line 14's speed and service. However, despite its automation it has not been free of accidents. While the platform doors prevent access to the rails, they are susceptible to electric outages which have halted service entirely."

I'm not aware of any provision that BART's new cars will be designed to be unattended. That's not to say that certain technical features can't or won't be built into them to allow for it in the future. A significantly complex communications link is necessary to be established between the train and trackside in order for remote human monitors to be aware of and be able to initiate correction of any problems on the trains that can't be automatically/remotely rectified. A significant drawback of unattended trains is the difficulty of safely operating a train in manual mode remotely. You may still have to send someone to the train to safely move it in manual mode under certain failure modes or to evacuate it in an emergency. This can take significantly longer than if someone is already there.

Unattended train operation does not automatically bring you the trouble free, union free, significantly lower wage employee utopia (for you) that you desire. It can actually add significant length to delays caused by malfunctions or emergencies.

Before the latest one, the last BART strike was in September 1997 so there isn't a strike every 4 years.

You are so obsessed with BART employee's wages that you can't get your facts straight.

It has become obvious that you are someone with a college degree who doesn't make as much money as BART train operators or station agents.

You seem to think there is some rule in life that says someone without a college degree should automatically make less money than someone with one.

The reality of the situation is that it is entirely up to you to make an action plan for yourself to make more money than they do. That action plan would not include incessantly whining about that disparity here like a child whose sibling got a bigger dish of ice cream.

bikesonbart's picture

I'm with you on this one. The unions should go ahead and strike for as long as they want. Their demands are outrageous. Sure management is out of control, but that is not the issue at this particular moment. The whole system is corrupt and the service the riders get for their money is terrible.

I say strike for months if they want, the longer the better. I, for one, don't care or sympathize. It will be nice to not use that smelly, noisy, and often broken down system for a while.

Dear Bart workers, I can only have sex on the trains, so if you strike I will not be able to get any nookie. Please do not strike because that will make me very sad. Thank you