It was just another ho-hum day on the San Francisco public transit line. Commuters loaded and unloaded getting ready to take on another day at work.
The height of rush hour is always hectic and unnerving if you’re not used to it. Tempers get frayed when any little thing gets between them and the time clock at their job.
Then, suddenly, everything came to a screeching halt.
At first, the commuters started through the usual gamut of emotions. Fear that something terrible was happening. Then frustration that their schedules would be altered.
Later, most people experienced anger that nobody seemed to be doing anything about the problem.
When it was finally announced what the problem was, the majority of people nodded their heads in agreement. Stopping was definitely the right thing to do.
A young pit bull had somehow gotten up onto the tracks. Not only was he in danger of getting hit by a speeding train, but the electrified third rail could be dangerous or deadly.
Riders had been the first to spot the pup on the elevated tracks near the Coliseum station in Oakland at around 8 a.m., reported BART spokeswoman Alicia Trost. Most expressed concern for the dog’s safety. Some even made jokes about the situation.
Some people were upset that human schedules were being ignored instead of just letting the dog get hit or burned. They were immediately scorned by the massive numbers of animal lovers.
As soon as the first report was made, officers were immediately enroute to the scene, including local animal control officers.
BART crews shut off power to the tracks so the officers could safely get closer to the dog. The dog didn’t seem to like that idea. It took off running toward Fruitvale, instead.
“One officer took off running after the dog,” said Trost. “And, the officer went to Fruitvale.”
At that point, Trost said BART officials made the decision to run a train in manual mode at a reduced speed to search for the dog.
East Bay Times reported that apparent dog whisperer and BART police Sgt. Tanzanika Carter eventually spotted the dog. She got onto the tracks, speaking softly so it would approach her. Carter was able to grab the dog’s collar and walk it up an emergency staircase onto the platform. She gave it some water before transporting it to Oakland Animal Control.
“She said the dog had a collar that looked a little worn, but there was no tag,” Trost said.
While some delayed riders were justifiably angry with the pup, many commuters posted their concerns for the dog’s safety on Twitter — along with plenty of pictures.
BART assured commuters they would catch the pup and save him from getting run over, though the former would prove to be much more difficult than they thought.
They even ran a rail inspection train in an attempt to herd the dog, and get trains moving again. But the dog evaded their every maneuver. Until Officer Carter came along.
The ordeal was over in roughly an hour, though Trost said it’s still unclear where the dog came from and how it managed to get onto the tracks.
BART was sorry that so many people were late getting to work, but they make no apologies for choosing to save the young dog’s life. Even though it made a lot of people late for work.
Without a microchip or tags, the BART pup will soon be looking for a forever home, and anyone who recognizes the pup has been encouraged to come forward. The poor dog had apparently been running for quite a while. He seemed to have a sweet temperament and even when he felt cornered, showed no signs of aggression.
Thanks so much to the officers and BART officials that went above and beyond in saving the dog’s life. And to those of you that booed the decision to stop the train until the dog was safe…we don’t have words.
The importance of getting to work on time can’t be weighed against the cost of any human or animal life. Anyone who thinks differently should make an appointment with a cardiologist. It’s possible you no longer have a heart.
Source: The Dodo