November 9, 2009
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BART Use Surges After Bridge Closure
When an emergency closed the San Francisco Bay Bridge on Oct. 27, the approximately 280,000 daily commuters who use the span turned to a reliable alternative: San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit District (BART) trains. Their boardings led to the largest single-day ridership levels in the agency’s 37-year history.
BART reported that 437,200 trips were taken on Oct. 28—an agency milestone exceeded the following day with 442,000 riders. The previous all-time high for a single day had been 405,400 riders on Sept. 8, 2008.
Ridership levels on each of the days were approximately one-quarter higher than the average for that weekday, according to BART. Also, regarding service between the East Bay and San Francisco, BART carried 253,400 passengers on Oct. 29 and 260,600 on Oct. 30—more than 50 percent higher than an average weekday.
“BART has and always will step up to the plate to keep the bay area moving. We're proud that commuters realize they can depend on us to be their most direct and fastest route to travel between San Francisco and the east bay,” said BART Board Vice President James Fang.
The bridge closed following an incident when two rods and a crossbar, installed over the Labor Day weekend to repair a crack, fell onto the deck during the evening rush hour.
The falling 5,000-pound bridge parts caused minor injuries to one person and damage to three cars.
Caltrans reopened the bridge Nov. 2 following extensive repair work.