Muni Service Restored + Meltdown Witnesses

Photo by geordino

A bit of good news after yesterday’s major Muni fail: All Muni Metro lines are running this morning, SF Appeal says, and no delays have been reported (yet). According to the SFMTA, as of today at 6:10am, “subway service has been fully restored.”

How’s your morning commute after yesterday’s epic meltdown?

We have a few witness reports from yesterday evening for you too.  A couple of commenters on Muni Diaries wrote in to share their experience having been on the N-Judah that took out wires and concrete supports, and in effect, wiped out the entire Muni Metro subway system for hours.

First, @heyitscarlosjr:

I was on the N train that caused this mess. It sounded like a major bang as if it crashed into something but we didn’t feel a jerk to it… The power went out on the train. The operator said they were looking into it, that it might be a few minutes. I didn’t wait, i went up to take the 6. I can’t believe that

And next, Lily:

I was on the N Judah when this happened. I was the scariest thing I’ve ever experienced during my time on public transit. Before we entered the tunnel a Muni worker looked like he was chasing our train waving his hands. As soon as I lost all cell phone reception sparks started flying everywhere outside of the train, and then the ceiling began to crack spaying debris onto the surrounding seats. We waited 20 minutes to be “rescued” and lead back up to the street. Fuck you for making me an hour late to work Muni!

Sounds like Carlos got off the N-Judah prior to what Lily is describing. In any event, it sounds spectacular if fail-ridden.

And SFMTA has issued its obligatory “Muni will investigate” statement, according to the SF Examiner. Possible culprit? Missing automatic train controls, which, according to the Examiner, “might have prevented a train from ripping wires and concrete supports off a subway wall.”

We’ll keep you updated, and keep us updated on your commute today.


  • Paul Rose (SFMTA)

    Regarding the issue of “automatic train control”…

    Automatic train control had absolutely nothing to do with this incident. This was an issue with infrastructure, where bad overhead wire broke the pantograph and eventually caused the damage to the overhead wire. Having automatic train control in the sunset tunnel would not have made a difference.

    Some background on automatic train control in sunset tunnel: Trains traditionally run in manual through the sunset tunnel. In fact, since 1999, more than 800,000 trains have safely rolled through the tunnel with only one incident. If the automatic train control system were used all the time in the tunnel, service would be slowed considerably because the trains would have to stop at the portal of the tunnel and wait for the computerized control system to engage.

  • Mark Ballew

    Didn’t we just replace the OH wire after it was stolen last year? Should be brand new!

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