We've long since stopped holding our breath for late-night BART service, even despite local pols' best efforts, and now it seems new BART safety regulations could actually make the agency head in the opposite direction entirely.
The same system limitations that keep trains from running late into the night (namely that there's only one line under the Bay in either direction) are also the same reason we could see more limited service.
According to BART assistant manager of operations Paul Oversier, the new safety measures implemented after the two BART workers were struck and killed on the tracks during maintenance last October will force the agency to slim down the hours of available service — most likely cutting into the early morning 4 a.m. start time first.
As it stands, workers only have three hours or so per night to do maintenance work while no trains are running. The new regulations force BART to limit service while workers are on the tracks, meaning some of the daytime maintenance may need to be moved to those already limited nighttime hours if there are already too many delays affecting service.
The proposed service cutback was not part of the upcoming year's budget proposal, however, so any changes to BART hours are at least another year off, if they do come to fruition.
Finally, one other possibly frustrating change proposed at last night's BART directors meeting was the elimination of timed transfers at MacArthur, which a director from Brentwood believes are getting unsafe due to "too many people, too many bicycles, too many suitcases." However, there's hope that any overcrowding issues will magicaly disappear when the new train cars arrive sometime in 2017.