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City and County of San Francisco
Municipal Transportation Agency
Citizens’ Advisory Council

Engineering, Maintenance and Safety Committee

Wednesday, June 22, 2011, at 4:00 p.m.
1 South Van Ness Avenue, Conference Room 3075
San Francisco, California


  • Call to Order
    Chairman Daniel Weaver called the meeting to order at 4:05 p.m. 
  • Roll Call

EMSC Members present at Roll Call:  Steve Ferrario and Daniel Weaver

EMSC Members absent:  Greg Riessen and Jamison Wieser

CAC members, not on this committee, but also present:  Mark Ballew and Dorris Vincent

Chairman Weaver appointed Mark Ballew to serve as Pro Tem

  • Announcement of prohibition of sound producing devices during the meeting.

The CAC Secretary made the announcement.

  • Approval of Minutes

Committee member Steve Ferrario suggested an amendment for item #7, add the phrase “by adding an additional right hand turn lane from eastbound Sloat to southbound Junipero Serra” to the second sentence.

On motion to approve the minutes of May 25, 2011: As amended

      Ayes – Ballew, Ferrario, and Weaver

      Nayes – None

      Absent – Riessen and Wieser

Public Comment:


  • Report of the Chairman (For discussion only): 


  • Public Comment: 


  • Presentation, discussion and possible action regarding the train speeds in the Twin Peaks Tunnel. (John Haley, Director, Transit Services)

John Haley provided an overview and handed out Twin Peaks Tunnel Overview powerpoints.   Mr. Haley stated there were issues concerning the train speed in the tunnel and the decision to raise the speed does not have a simple answer.  The wheel-well interface was designed for lighter cars to move faster, but when the trains were replaced from PCC to Bredas, there were no adjustments made to the supporting parts.  The Twin Peaks track installation is much older than the Market Street tunnel and has more curves in it.  Mr. Haley stated that the Twin Peaks tunnel needs to be re-railed.  In July, 1,000 feet of inbound and outbound tracks at the Castro station will be re-railed. 

Public Comment:

David Pilpel encouraged the committee to make formal recommendations so the SFMTA Board is aware of this.  Mr. Pilpel stated that it’s been over 12 years since the Breda vehicles have been around and there’s been very little rail replacement.  Mr. Pilpel stated the maintenance of way area needs more focus.

Edward Mason stated the rail track going east on Church to Market is going away.

  • Presentation, discussion and possible action regarding Muni’s emergency operations preparedness plan.  (Ted Unaegbu, Emergency Preparedness Manager, Safety, Training, Security & Enforcement)

Ted Unaegbu discussed Muni’s emergency preparedness and stated that Muni follows the guidelines provided by homeland security when responding to emergency situations.  Mr. Unaegbu stated that the Department of Emergency Management is the primary coordinator for the City and they work with key members of various City agencies together with the FBI, Highway Patrol, and the Office of Emergency Services.  He also stated that every City employee is classified as a disaster service worker. 

Committee member Ferrario inquired about what resources Muni has on the reserve fleet and buses if power were out, the subway couldn’t run trains, and not enough fuel for vehicles.  Mr. Ferrario stated that interim emergency plans need to be thought out.

Council member Vincent inquired where people will be brought if they were hurt on a bus.  Mr. Unaegbu stated that the Department of Public Health has a detailed plan  where people would be brought, where triage stages would be placed and where ambulances would be staged.

Council member Ballew inquired if there is an emergency in the subway, how passengers would be evacuated off the train.  Mr. Unaegbu stated that subway infrastructures have emergency exits.  Committee member Steve Ferrario stated that the Chinatown station (Central Subway) needs to provide extra exits.

Public Comment:

David Pilpel suggested asking for an emergency egress for the Central Subway.  Mr. Pilpel also stated that he was on a train where passengers had to exit the train in the tunnel because the train in front of the one he was on had broke the pantograph.  He stated that the passageway was very dark, emergency lighting was poor, covered with grime and he encouraged committee members to look into this.

  • Presentation, discussion and possible action regarding changes to the NextMuni system at the Civic Center Station. (Travis Fox, Manager, Information Technology)

Travis Fox stated that the biggest improvement is the ATCS upgrade and new display signs for the subway and that the platform signs should be in agreement with NextMuni and the public announcements.  Work was done to make sure the worst performing signs were hard-wired to show accuracy.  NextBus data and the internet feed connection was upgraded as part of the C3 upgrade and that staff is in the process of seeking funding for the West Portal and Church NextMuni displays.

Committee Chairman Weaver stated that outbound sign at the West Portal station constantly flashes a “T” when the K/T is at the platform and inquired if this process will be upgraded.  Hoppers, Infrastructure Manager, stated that digital maintenance personnel need to be informed.  Committee member Ferrario mentioned that the old signs were more accurate than the ones in use now.

Public Comment:


  • Committee Members’ requests for information (For discussion only) 


  •  Schedule upcoming calendar items (For discussion only)

Next regular meeting:  July 27, 2011, at 4:00 p.m.
1 South Van Ness Avenue, 3rd Floor Conference Room 3075

  • Adjournment:  The meeting was adjourned at 6:37 p.m.

Respectfully submitted by:
Yvette Torres
SFMTA CAC - Secretary



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