Skip to content

Details emerge about deadly motorcycle crash that shut down BART through Oakland for hours during Friday evening commute

Rider thrown onto BART tracks, struck by train after crash on city street
BCN_BART TRAIN
A BART train arrives at the Pleasant Hill BART station in Walnut Creek, Calif. on Monday, February 1, 2021.

A motorcyclist was killed after a collision in which he was ejected from his vehicle onto BART tracks and subsequently hit by a passing train in Oakland, which caused major delays on BART in all directions on Friday during the evening commute.

The incident caused BART service to be stopped in downtown Oakland in the Antioch, Berryessa, Richmond and San Francisco/Daly City/SFO directions.

A BART spokesperson said early Friday evening said the motorcyclist involved in the accident hit the BART right-of-way barrier and was ejected onto the tracks. This was near 23rd Street and Northgate Avenue, where the Oakland underground tunnel ascends to aerial track.

The Oakland Police Department responded to a report of a vehicle collision at 24th Street and Northgate Avenue around 4 p.m. Friday. Responding officers learned a motorcycle was traveling west on 24th Street when the driver lost control while crossing Northgate Avenue and hit the curb.

The motorcyclist ended up on the BART tracks and was struck by a passing train. The 35-year-old Oakland man, whose name has not yet been released, was pronounced deceased at the scene.

The cause of the incident is still under investigation.

BART trains headed for Antioch and Richmond are running at limited capacity as of 6:30 p.m. Friday. Full service was restored by 9:30 p.m.

BART officials took to Twitter on Friday evening to further acknowledge the circumstances of the fatality and the impact that the BART closure had on commuters, as well as respond to some who were critical of their response during what was "a tremendous disruption to service for many hours."

"This trauma is felt by many. Our hearts go out to the family of this person, our train operator, the people on board the train, the staff responding to the incident, the staff that have to deliver service while a major section of track is blocked and countless others," BART officials said on the agency's main Twitter account.

"When a track is blocked in downtown Oakland at the moment people are getting off work or heading out for a fri night, it is very impactful. We have to turn trains around and dump people off before their destination. We have crowded platforms and people cant hear announcements," they added.

"The comms team was given basic initial info- someone was on our track and service has been halted," officials said. "We shared the info and some took to twitter declaring the person was a junkie on our tracks and it is BARTs fault. We hope you all have since deleted your tweets."

"We are very sorry for the horrible commute and lack of train service and the hard to hear announcements in stations and on trains," BART officials added. "Staff will do a debrief on lessons learned and how we can do better. We have seen all your tweets and we will review them with staff."

Sunday also proved a difficult service day for the transit agency, as BART routes through the Transbay Tube were halted for more than two hours starting at around 11 a.m. due to two disabled trains in between Embarcadero and Lake Merritt, one near West Oakland, and the other near the 12th Street Station. Service started to recover by 1:25 p.m.

Editor's note: Embarcadero Media editor Jeremy Walsh contributed to this story.