The Norman Transcript

Nation/World

October 20, 2013

Train kills two track workers amid SF Bay strike

(Continued)

OAKLAND, Calif. —

BART spokesman Rick Rice said that the two sides remain in communication though they were not expected back at the bargaining table.

Messages left for negotiators from the Service Employees International Union, which also represents workers, were not immediately returned.

However, SEIU president Roxanne Sanchez said they were willing to sign off on pay, health care and pension issues, and send the remaining snarl — work rules — to an arbitrator, a proposal BART has previously refused. But BART officials later said they would be willing to send the entire contract to arbitration but not the work rules alone.

Weekend BART use is light compared with the workweek, and frustrated commuters Friday said they hoped an agreement could be quickly reached.

The system carries its ridership through tunnels under the bay and into the region’s urban core of San Francisco from four surrounding counties, relieving what would otherwise be congested bridges.

In an effort to alleviate delays, many of the Bay Area’s other 27 transit systems added bus, ferry and rail service. Carpools and rideshare programs were also busy, and more cyclists took to the streets. Ferry operators said their ridership has doubled.

———

Associated Press writer Andrew Dalton contributed to this report from Los Angeles. Cone reported from Fresno.

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