Weekend fail: car driving through Duboce tunnel


Another new year, another driver who didn’t get the memo that the Duboce tunnel is for Muni only. Rider @mikevladimer on Twitter was on the N-Judah when he saw some unfamiliar headlights coming this way in the tunnel going to Cole Valley.

Just last summer another driver made the same mistake, resulting in panicked yelling from Muni workers before escaping out of the tunnel (see this amazingly cringe pic submitted by a rider). Drivers beware: another drunk SUV driver who crashed into the tunnel got community service for the trouble he caused.

Hat tip: Amy at Capp Street Crap.

NextBus outage could last for weeks

next bus broken sign examiner

Updated Jan 10, 2017:

Muni says that NextBus prediction for most of the 150 light rail vehicles have been fixed, which leaves the 500 buses that still need an upgrade. By our calculation, this means about 50% of the vehicles are still affected (versus 70% previously). More details this way.

Original post:

Think this week’s commute was a shit show with all those NextMuni lies? That could be the case for the next couple of weeks, according to SFBay.ca. NextBus, the system which runs prediction times for Muni, had upgraded its wireless network from 2G and now many of the old buses don’t show up on NextMuni at all.

More from SFBay:

The transit agency has been going through an upgrade with the NextMuni system. The system uses AT&T’s wireless cellphone network to transmit the data to the NextMuni screens.

Data had been transmitting through NextMuni using a 2G network, which AT&T had deactivated because the technology is now outdated.

SFMTA officials said the deactivation happened sooner than expected so some Muni vehicles may not show up on NextMuni because they simply do not have the upgraded communications and monitoring system yet.

According to the SFMTA’s blog post, this affects 70% of vehicles and includes all Metro trains.

And it’s not just the signs at Muni shelters that are affected. Because third party transit apps also use NextBus data, you won’t be getting accurate prediction on your phone either.

You might remember seeing the “upgrading to 3G” signs last summer. As Hoodline points out, the agency should have known about the upgrade for years. “AT&T first noted in an SEC filing back in 2012 that it intended to sunset its legacy system on January 1, 2017.”

The SFMTA says that they are “working aggressively to resolve the issue” but has not given any time estimates other than “at least a matter of weeks.”

So basically, for the next couple of weeks, we will have no idea when the bus is coming most of the time. Meanwhile, the SFMTA suggests that you use the line frequency schedule to figure out your commute. That should be an interesting, if not unfulfilling, exercise?

We’ll keep you updated on the any progress we find out.

Well, this sucks. While you’re waiting for the bus and not knowing when it’s coming at all, maybe the Muni Diaries podcast can keep you company. Find us on iTunes and Google Play.

Photo credit: SF Examiner

Transit news: new Muni fleet on Fri the 13th, Chinatown leader wants steel barriers for Muni stop


Lots of Muni news in the first half of the year, including a lot of hubbub about the Geary BRT. Your fresh transit news this week:

Chinatown community leader wants Muni stops to be protected by steel bars (SF Examiner). For the next time a car decides to barrel down the street and crash into your Muni shelter.
New Muni fleet to arrive on Friday the 13th (SFist). Sixty four light rail trains will arrive that day, but won’t be in service until training is complete. The new trains are longer and have fewer seats.
When should the supes vote for the Geary Bus Rapid Transit project? (San Francisco Chronicle)
SFFD Rescues Possibly Intoxicated Man Pinned At Waist Between BART Cars In SF (SFist). “Rescuers pushed the train over with inflatable airbags to rescue the man,” and miraculously, he survived.
NextBus was even less accurate than usual (SF Examiner). Not to worry, we have the most accurate NextBus sign to date.
Photo credit

11 Most WTF Muni Moments of 2016


Yes, the entire year of 2016 can be filed under WTF, and some of the tiny “is this really happening” moments happened on our quirky little Muni world. Let’s count the ways.

11. See above: Bad ass toast eater! I mean, how do YOU butter your bread?

10. That one time when a street bird got stuck on the bus and made its way to Twitter fame (and turned into a hilarious on-stage performance at Muni Diaries Live!)

9. Safe sex on the go. And p.s. here’s why you should never touch anything on the bus.

8. Well, safety third.

7. Unz unz unz…were you at the Muni stop rave?

6. Why public transit is necessary.

5. Again, filed under “You had ONE job.”

4. What is wrong with this picture? Oh hai J-Church making a right onto Market Street. Ooops.

3. Attention: goat on Muni!
goat on muni diaries by jason braatz

2. Don’t mistake this mini bottle for your hand sanitizer. That would be a pretty bad idea.

1. Ladies only sit with their legs crossed, you know.
dog sitting perfect muni diaries by thrifteye

And bonus extra credit on BART because 2016: a little video from Reddit.

Thanks to every single rider who sent us these hilarious moments on transit. Got other important news for your fellow riders? Tag us on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. Our email inbox muni.diaries.sf@gmail.com is always open!

Hey, are you a podcast fan? Hear our live stories on the new Muni Diaries podcast! Find us on iTunes and Google Play!

New Muni fare hikes for monthly pass and cash riders starting Jan. 1


Heads up: Your monthly A pass is about to get more expensive starting the first of the year. The monthly A pass, which covers rides on both Muni and BART, will go from $86 to $91, while the M pass (Muni only) will stay the same: $73. The cost of discount monthly passes for youth, senior, the disabled, and Medicare recipients will increase from $25 to $36. These fare increases are actually not a part of the Automatic Fare Indexing Policy that we’ve seen annually. They were approved as a part of the 2017 budget back in April.

Read more

The wondrous world of Muni’s Lost and Found


Losing stuff on the bus is kinda the worst, right? It elicits that feeling of your things just vanishing into the ether. But, contra that feeling, much of what riders leave behind on Muni buses, trains, and streetcars ends up in Muni’s Lost and Found.

SF Examiner reporter and Muni Diaries Live veteran Joe Fitzgerald Rodriguez took a field trip to the SFMTA’s basement recently. As he notes, many of the items we Muni riders leave behind tell a story (or two).

A bag filled with socks and baby items could be from a mother or father, [the SFMTA’s Nancy] Marquez said, and they see plenty of backpacks that may belong to those who are homeless.

“Sometimes, things smell really bad,” Marquez said. But they hang on to all items, no matter how seemingly disposable — just in case.

Among the more common items are—you guessed it—phones. SFMTA says they get about 70 lost phones, including the newest models, per month. Less common, but more urgent (for most people, anyway), are passports.

The agency holds onto unclaimed items for 60 days. Items that are claimed but not yet picked up are held for 120 days. After that, lost and found stuff typically goes to Goodwill. Cash goes back to the city’s coffers, which more or less makes sense.

Read Joe’s full story on SFExaminer.com. And if anyone has the prescription Ray-Bans I left on BART in 2012, it’d be cool if you let me know.

Photo by Joe Fitzgerald Rodriguez

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