A fire that broke out near an Oakland BART station early Thursday morning halted train service between the East Bay and San Francisco, forcing commuters to seek alternate means of transportation while workers hurry to fix the damaged tracks.
Officials reported that a fire broke out around 2:15 a.m. at a construction site near the West Oakland station, spreading to nearby BART property where it damaged electrical cables and other equipment to the point where the station needed to be closed for emergency repairs, according to BART’s website.
AC Transit bus stops saw long lines and heavy traffic was reported on the Bay Bridge as a result of the disrupted service. The San Francisco Bay Ferry also enhanced their service between the East Bay and San Francisco to assist stranded commuters.
The delays effected workers throughout the Bay Area, including UC Berkeley staff. According to the UC Berkeley Newscenter, Jeannine Raymond, assistant vice chancellor for human relations, issued a message to campus department supervisors and managers Thursday warning them that transit delays could keep some employees from getting to work on time or at all.
“If you have staff who are cross trained and can step in to assist, today may present a time to try out new skills,” Raymond said in the message.
All East Bay and San Francisco peninsula lines are still running. BART officials said they hope to reopen full transbay service by 4 p.m., although times ultimately depend on the extent of the damage and the time it takes to repair the damaged equipment.