Mar 8, 2016
1 comment

A BART director is proposing an ordinance that would make it illegal for a passenger to take up more than one seat in situations that prevent others from sitting, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

Passengers who break the proposed rule would face a first-offense fine of $100, second-offense fine of $200 and repeat-offender fine of $500, the Chronicle reported. People whose size and medical conditions require more than a single seat would be exempted.

The first vote on BART Director Joel Keller’s proposal could come as soon as Thursday’s Board of Directors meeting, and requires two votes for approval.

Fining seat hogs would add to existing efforts to enforce proper etiquette on BART trains. One popular effort was spearheaded by BART passengers themselves who launched a Facebook page dedicated to shaming such individuals. On the BART Idiot Hall of Fame, nearly 10,000 members share and view photos of people exhibiting bad etiquette on rail system.

When debating Director Keller’s proposed seat-hog fine, members of the Facebook group expressed mixed reactions Tuesday. Several questioned whether fines would be enforceable, saying they don’t often see cops on trains.

“This will be enforced just like they enforce no eating or drinking….in other words not at all,” one commented.

Photo posted to the BART Facebook page.


  1. I’m an infrequent BART rider but what I see more than anything else when it comes to seat hogs are street people who are nearly living on these BART cars and spread themselves and their belongings out taking up 2-4 seats.

    And, like one person commented in the article, how often does anyone actually see a BART officer to report a serious crime like a mugging, car break-in, the attempted molesting of young girls, vandalism of the cars and stations and–my favorite–the very many who use the elevators and bypass the fare gates entirely?

    Don Gosney | Mar 8th, 2016

About the Author

Mike Aldax is the editor of the Richmond Standard. He has 13 years of journalism experience, most recently as a reporter for the San Francisco Examiner. He previously held roles as reporter and editor at Bay City News, Napa Valley Register, Garden Island Newspaper in Kaua’i, and the Queens Courier in New York City.