Intoxicated sports fans a transit safety issue

| June 20, 2011

I am a regular Caltrain commuter, traveling between San Mateo and San Francisco five days a week for work.

During the baseball season, intoxicated fans regularly create an unpleasant environment for others. Recently I saw this unpleasantness turn violent in a way that was all too predictable.

When the fight began, Caltrain continued down the tracks, with conductors unaware of what was taking place.

There were no cameras and no way to alert the conductor of an emergency. Crowds made it impossible for bystanders to move to a safe place.

Trains full of intoxicated fans with zero police or Caltrain presence create a grave public safety issue. It is only a matter of time before an innocent person will be seriously hurt or killed if this continues.

I know I am not the first to raise this concern. The conductors I’ve spoken to claim they’ve voiced their concerns for years.

I’m told fights on postgame trains are a regular occurrence. Not reconciling this issue is criminally negligent.

Kory Stewart
San Mateo


Expensive memorial event

I’m a big fan of the job that the police and firemen do and the risks that they take to protect our citizens. However, at a time of significant budget shortages, including possible layoffs within those departments, who paid for the recent $2 million to $3 million memorial event for the fallen firemen?

How much was spent to assemble 200 fire engines, thousands of firemen from around the country, provide police escorts and close major highways during the Friday commute? Did this event have the survivoring family members interest foremost in mind? Or was it intended to demonstrate the influence of a powerful union?

What did this cost the citizens? Does anyone dare touch this politically sensitive subject?

Walter Keefe
San Francisco


Credit forced on cabbies

I am sympathetic to the anger cabbies feel about the credit card fees they are charged. This is because they are being forced to accept credit cards.

Other businesses that don’t like to pay these processing fees can choose to be cash-only. Let the cabbies who don’t mind the potential of losing some business make that choice as well. Cabbies shouldn’t be forced to cater to people who can’t be bothered to carry cash.

If given the freedom of choice, and cash-only cabs were to lose enough business, the market will dictate that they need to accept these fees and take credit cards as payment.

Marc Schoenfeld
San Francisco

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