San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) has been working for the past year on developing a Public Transportation Agency Safety Plan (PTASP) that effectively addresses safety throughout the organization. Earlier this month, the California Public Utilities Commission approved BART’s PTASP, a major step towards fully implementing a Safety Management Systems (SMS) approach throughout one of the largest rail transit agencies in the country.
With technical support from TRA throughout this process, BART has made a significant effort to ensure its safety program is ahead of the curve and following industry best practices. In 2019, BART engaged TRA to begin a Safety Programs and Training Needs Assessment and Agency Safety Plan Development, with TRA Vice President Chris Wallgren leading the effort. The team has been responsible for assessing the current safety programs and training in place at BART, part of which involved developing questionnaires related to safety training and the integration of safety into operations and maintenance training programs.
The TRA team also developed criteria for interviews with safety, operations, maintenance, training, and other agency personnel to determine their current engagement with the safety department and their understanding of internal BART safety activities as well as the current and future requirements established by the state and the FTA. Working in support of BART safety department leadership, Mr. Wallgren led the effort to develop a MAP-21 compliant PTASP that integrated the three separate safety plans in place for BART’s existing BART heavy rail line, the eBART diesel multiple unit service, and the Oakland Airport Connector APM.