After Ingleside Light Inquiry, Streetcar Boarding Island Safety Device To Be Repaired

The crash attenuator on the Jules Avenue outbound boarding island has been in disrepair for over a year. Alex Mullaney/The Ingleside Light

INGLESIDE, San Francisco — The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency is working to repair a safety device on a K Ingleside streetcar boarding island after the Ingleside Light made an inquiry about its condition.

The crash attenuator, as the safety device is called, on the outbound streetcar boarding island located between Brighton and Lee avenues has been missing several segments, likely from a collision, since at least December 2019. In February 2020, more pieces were removed, prompting the Ingleside Light’s inquiry.

“A specially engineered piece is required and will have to be ordered from a manufacturer and installed by their crews,” SFMTA spokesperson Erica Kato said.  “We are in the process of acquiring quotes and moving as quickly as we can.”

Crash attenuators work by crumpling when a vehicle collides into it to protect the motorist.

In December 2019, a motorist died when his vehicle collided with the ADA ramp of the K Ingleside streetcar boarding island between Ashton and Jules avenues. An Ingleside Light investigation found the boarding island was missing its warning sign to direct motorists to either side, which had been sheared off and never replaced.

The Taraval Station police blotter recorded an incident in early 2020 during which a man was throwing pieces of the crash attenuator into traffic.

In May 2020, the Ingleside Merchants Association sent a letter to SFMTA Director Jeffrey Tumlin to request that the agency better maintain the boarding islands. The broken crash attenuator was on its list of issues.

The Ingleside Light is a member of IMA.

Neil Ballard, occasional Ingleside Light contributor and SFMTA Citizens’ Advisory Council representative for District 7, said he observed SFMTA staff inspecting the crash attenuator on Monday, March 1. 

The SFMTA is working “across the agency on potential temporary safety fixes while we address the permanent solution,” Kato said.