FTA Wants Fewer People on Muni Buses

By Matt Baume
|  Saturday, Mar 26, 2011  |  Updated 7:15 AM PDT
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FTA Wants Fewer People on Muni Buses

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San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom rides Muni.

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At first, it sounds crazy: the federal government wants FEWER people on Muni?

But it's all part of new proposed FTA rules regarding overcrowding. Previously, the government assumed that the average passenger weighed 150 pounds, and calculated the maximum safe occupancy based on that size. The new regulations would peg that weight at 175, which means fewer people would be allowed on the bus.

Of course, Muni does not observe those maximum occupancy rules and allows as many people to cram onto vehicles as possible, in violation of those FTA rules.

Weighty passengers may be the least of Muni's problems when it comes to light rail. On Monday, mechanical problems forced the agency to slow trains throughout the system just as people were coming home from work. It took about an hour to restore "normal" service. Muni's normal operations arte still below the legally-mandated rate of timely service.

Elsewhere in the city, a train and a truck collided yesterday morning, sending six people to the hospital.

Muni was recently cited by a state agency for its numerous safety violations.

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