SAN FRANCISCO—BART will pay $1.275 million to settle a lawsuit filed by three Bay Area counties for violating waste and hazardous-materials regulations throughout the the transit system, prosecutors announced on Tuesday, January 31.
The lawsuit was settled within hours after district attorneys from Alameda, Contra Costa and San Mateo filed the lawsuit, reports said.
“BART chose the path of compliance and the path of resolution versus the path of litigation, and I think that was appropriate,” said Stacey Grassini, Contra Costa County Deputy District Attorney.
The suit claimed more than 30 BART facilities lacked emergency response plans for spills of large quantities of diesel, petroleum, battery acid and fire-extinguishing chemicals.
BART allegedly failed to implement hazardous materials business plans to the three corresponding counties. The suit claimed BART did not store petroleum and hazardous waste properly at many facilities.
“The public and environment were not harmed by this noncompliance, but it was a serious problem, so that’s why we’ve taken steps to correct it,” said James Allison, a BART spokesman.
BART will pay 675,000 in civil penalties, $300,000 for the cost of the investigation, and $300,000 to create an environmental compliance position on its staff for the next two years.
The violations were brought to the attention of Alameda, Contra Costa, and San Mateo counties. Prosecutors conducted a full investigations into many BART facilities.
According to Allison, the Transit agency has already created a environment compliance position in response to the lawsuit and investigation.