muniaccident1.5.jpgIt’s barely been a year since James M. Dougherty became Muni’s Chief Safety Officer and Director of Transportation Safety. In that time he’s won the National Safety Council’s Distinguished Service to Safety Award, been called to the carpet by Supervisor Bevan Dufty, (presumably) had to answer for more accidents than we have the energy to link to (West Portal rear ender, SUV/streetcar sandwich, and J Church vs. Streetcar being some of my personal faves), but, apparently, still had time to look for a new job — according to DC area news radio station WTOP, Dougherty’s up for the head of safety gig at Metro, Washington’s transit system.

SF MTA spokesperson Judson True all but confirms the report, saying that he couldn’t comment as “negotiations with Dougherty are ongoing.” Since spokespeople are usually happy to tell reporters when they got it wrong, one can only assume that Dougherty’s already hit up his corner bodega for empty boxes, and is scanning Craigslist for lodging inside the beltway.

Metro spokespeople seem psyched at the idea of Dougherty leaving Muni for DC, saying they “believe that Dougherty will bring immediate stability.”

“Safety has been his mantra,” said one, while another says “One of the things that we need to do is make sure the agency lives safety, that we change our culture.”

Good luck with that, y’all!

the author

Eve Batey is the editor and publisher of the San Francisco Appeal. She used to be the San Francisco Chronicle's Deputy Managing Editor for Online, and started at the Chronicle as their blogging and interactive editor. Before that, she was a co-founding writer and the lead editor of SFist. She's been in the city since 1997, presently living in the Outer Sunset with her husband, cat, and dog. You can reach Eve at

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