Get SF Weekly Newsletters

Thursday, November 17, 2011

BART to Add Cleaner Vinyl Seats in 100 Train Cars

Posted By on Thu, Nov 17, 2011 at 3:40 PM

click to enlarge Au revoir, fecal bacteria
  • Au revoir, fecal bacteria

BART's board of directors voted unanimously today to replace the much-reviled fabric seat covers in 100 train cars with cushioned vinyl covers that will be much less susceptible to stains and bacteria.

The public has long been clamoring for cleaner BART seats. The retro-fabulous fabric seats in BART trains are comfortable enough, but have some hygienic downsides to say the least. In March, the Bay Citizen found that "fecal and skin-borne bacteria resistant to antibiotics" teemed in the seats.

BART officials announced their intention to try out cleaner vinyl seats in September, but the board finally approved the proposal today. After a series of "seat labs" to elicit public comments on what they'd like to see on trains, BART has settled on a product called PreVail, made by the company Omnova.

"The fabric seats were considered a real attraction when BART began service in 1972, but we're now carrying 370,000 riders each weekday and those seats are getting much more use," BART General Manager Grace Crunican said in a statement. "This trial should give both customers and BART staff a chance to see if vinyl, cushioned seats strike a modern balance between cleanliness and comfort."

Seats in 100 cars will be replaced next spring, according to transit officials. If riders respond well, the contract with Omnova has an option to extend the covers to an additional hundred cars, bringing the total number of renovated train cars to 200.

Follow us on Twitter at @SFWeekly and @TheSnitchSF

  • Pin It

Tags: , , ,

About The Author

Peter Jamison


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed

Like us on Facebook


  • clipping at Brava Theater Sept. 11
    Sub Pop recording artists 'clipping.' brought their brand of noise-driven experimental hip hop to the closing night of 2016's San Francisco Electronic Music Fest this past Sunday. The packed Brava Theater hosted an initially seated crowd that ended the night jumping and dancing against the front of the stage. The trio performed a set focused on their recently released Sci-Fi Horror concept album, 'Splendor & Misery', then delved into their dancier and more aggressive back catalogue, and recent single 'Wriggle'. Opening performances included local experimental electronic duo 'Tujurikkuja' and computer music artist 'Madalyn Merkey.'"