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City and County of San Francisco
Municipal Transportation Agency
Citizens’ Advisory Council (MTA CAC)

Engineering, Maintenance & Safety Committee (EMSC)

Regular Meeting Minutes

Wednesday, September 12, 2007 at 3:00 p.m.
1 South Van Ness Avenue, Conference Room 3075
San Francisco, California

1. Call to Order / Roll Call (Agenda Item 1). The regular meeting of the Engineering, Maintenance & Safety committee (EMSC) was called to order at 3:08 p.m., Wednesday, September 12, 2007. Daniel Weaver (Chair) presided. A quorum was present including the following:

EMSC Members Present at Roll Call: Daniel Weaver (Chair), Steve Ferrario, and Jamison Wieser.

EMSC Members Absent: Bruce Oka

MTA CAC Members, not on this committee, but also present: None

MTA Staff (San Francisco Municipal Railway [MUNI] and Department of Parking and Traffic [DPT]) present: Jim Kelly (MUNI Sr. Operations Manager, Central Control), Elson Hao (Muni Senior Vehicle Engineer), John Sadorra (MUNI Chief Mechanical Officer, Rail), and Debra Reed (MTA CAC Secretary).

Community Representatives Present: None.

2. Public Comment – Concerning any issue within the jurisdiction of the Council and not noted on the agenda: None.

3. Adopt August 8, 2007 minutes:

August minutes were adopted.

4. Report of the Chair: Daniel Weaver (EMSC Chair)

Mr. Weaver reviewed Examiner’s September 12, 2007 news article titled, Muni’s System Central Control and More, which commented on metro’s system wide delay problems since the august of the T Third line. Upgrades for Central Control were estimated at $290 million; Muni had identified $15 million. Jim Kelly commented that the facility for Central Control in addition to being outdated was too small.

5. J Church Test (Discussion/ Action)

An EMSC discussion ensued with staff participation from Jim Kelly. The test involved using adequate resources, borrowing drivers and supervisors from other routes, and having DPT personnel touring for double-parking violations in order to make the test work with a goal to achieve the 85% on-time performance rate. Spikes during the on-time performance test were affected by incidents along the routes, such as, tracks blocked by autos, vehicle breakdowns, overhead problems, etc.

The maintenance department had been successful in keeping up with the daily vehicle requirement. On the other hand rail car drivers were understaffed by 70 drivers, with no extra-board, due to attrition. A significant number of drivers were retiring or leaving the agency compared to the number of new drivers being hired and trained.

Questions and Comments from EMSC

Dan Weaver

Had there been improvement from the traditional slow morning train commute from Van Ness Avenue? Response: By combining the K Ingleside train with the T Third train as a single train, there was improvement since fewer trains/one less train (K line) were being turned back at the Embarcadero. Monday night remained problematic because of extra trains needed to service riders attending ball games.

Was there any information revealed about the ATCS? Response: The test did not have any reflection on the ATCS system. When trying to turn 48 trains around at the Embarcadero station using 2 station pockets within a 1-hour time period, there would most likely be some expected backup. One of the solutions to alleviate the backup was to combine K Ingleside train with the T Third Street train as a single train to terminate at Sunnyvale in Visitation Valley, instead of the turnaround at the Embarcadero Station.

Jamison Wieser

Could more trains be added to continue from the Embarcadero Station to CalTrain? Response: The intersection at 4th and King Streets with the N Judah and the K/T train is already extremely busy with auto and pedestrian traffic during the PM commute. Adding a third train line, especially during ball game night, could be disastrous for commuters anxious to arrive at CalTrain.

Lessens learned were operator availability, more street supervisors, Response: TEP was looking at the number of stop signs resulting in slow transit speed and vehicle problems such as wear and tear on breaks, frequent door cycles and door interference by people holding doors open.

6. BREDA Mid Life (Discussion/Action)

An EMSC discussion ensued with staff participation from Elson Hao and John Sadorra.
MTA BREDA trains would be reaching midlife age at 15 years in 2010 - 2011. A BREDA Midlife overhaul program was suggested by the EMSC and was eventually included in the MTA budget; however the allocation were absorbed during 2005 - 2006 by cost overruns to complete the T Third project. Midlife overhaul was estimated to be $1.5 million per car, versus purchasing new BREADA trains at $4 million per car. The overhaul program would be supported by a combination of Federal and local funds.

The maintenance staff had dwindled by 38% since the year 2000 due to attrition. Short staffed maintenance group has been able to keep the trains running; however they do not have the long-term resources necessary to efficiently maintain BREDA trains. BREDA trains would need to be outsourced to independent companies for overhauls.

Motion: The MTA CAC recommends that the MTA increased the Rail Maintenance staff by 50% thereby returning them to their levels in the year 2000.

Moved by Dan Weaver

2nd by Jamison Wieser

CAC passed unanimously (Ayes - Weaver (Chair), Ferrario, and Wieser)

7. Maintenance Training Program (Discussion/Action)

Speaker Adrian Moy was not present for this item. This item will be continued at the October EMSC meeting. No action was taken by the EMSC.

8. Schedule Upcoming Meetings and Agenda Items:

Next regular meeting: Wednesday, October 10, 2007, at 1 South Van Ness Avenue, Conference Room 3075, at 3:00 p.m.

¨ Maintenance Training Program

¨ What are MTA’s Requirements for Vehicle Storage Over the Next 25 to 30 Years

9. Adjournment: 4:50 p.m.

Respectfully submitted by:
Debra J. Reed
MTA CAC - Secretary

Accessible meeting policy – One South Van Ness Avenue

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