As previously reported, 23-year-old Emily Dunn was struck and killed last Friday by a Muni bus in the Castro district. Since then, more details have emerged, both regarding the victim and errors at Muni that might have led to her death.
It was 2:30 PM Friday when Dunn was crossing 18th and Hartford St. She was almost through the intersection when a shuttle bus meant to provide supplementary service for the F-Market line hit her as it was making a left turn onto Hartford St.
As the Ex reports, Dunn, an Atlanta native, had only been living in SF for a month when the fatal accident occurred. Dunn was an avid traveler and had visited 35 countries, setting foot on every continent except Antarctica, they report.
She’d recently taken a job with Superfly, the event production company that puts on Outside Lands as well as other festivals, after volunteering for the company for several years. Dunn had also recently graduated in May with honors from Washington University in St. Louis.
“On Saturday and Sunday, some neighbors and visitors who didn’t know Dunn brought flowers and paid their respects to grieving friends who gathered at the site” of the accident, reports Streetsblog.
The accident is still under investigation and the Muni driver, who’d only been working with the agency for since January, has been placed on non-driving status.
However, seniority might not be the only factor: there appear to be breakdowns in communication between the driver and Muni’s central control that might have contributed to the accident.
According to Streetsblog, the bus “shouldn’t have been driving on Hartford.”
“Our policy is to operate buses on streets that have regular assigned service. Hartford does not have scheduled service, and our policy is it should not operate on streets like that,” SFMTA spokesperson Paul Rose told Streetsblog.
As the Chron reports, the as-yet unnamed driver was “driving his bus to a new assignment along a route he picked on his own after dispatchers at central control allegedly failed to give him specific directions.”
Says Muni spokesman Paul Rose, “They (bus drivers) are supposed to be given a route when they are asked to switch,” but that protocol was apparently not followed, with tragic results. No action has been taken against anyone at central control, Rose told the Chron.
Emily’s father, Chris, tells the Ex he has a lot of questions about the accident.
“Why did a bus driver have to come up a street he shouldn’t drive up?” He asked the Ex. “How do you prevent that from happening?”