Monday, September 11, 2006

Remembering September 11th

I did not ride BART on the morning of 9-11-01. I was in Los Angeles that morning and happened to sleep in late. My mother called me around 8am screaming, "the world is coming to an end." My mom tends to be overly emotional and dramatic, so I asked her to calm down and tell me what is going on. After I turned on the TV, I realized that the way we live is going to change forever from that day on. I didn't know anyone who was killed by the terrorist plots, but I too feel their sadness, disbelief and frustration.

Can someone tell me what happened on BART that day? Was service halted?

On this 5th anniversary of the 9-11 attacks, BART announces plans to hire an anti-terror chief. As long as the use resources allocated to us by the state and federal governments from the Homeland Security funds (instead of raising our fares), I think it is smart to be proactive. It is naive for us to think that we, Bay Area residents, are not in danger and are not terrorist targets. Of course we should not live in fear, but there are numerous things BART can still do to make the system safer and more secure.

I give my thoughts to the families of the innocent victims of the 9-11 attacks, and my appreciation and respect to the heroes of 9-11 and after.


Anonymous said...

After watching, very briefly, the coverage on television that morning, I came to work like it was a normal day. I shut out the whole thing and turned off the TV. I don’t remember anything about the ride over to SF except it seemed normal. It wasn’t until I got to work and everyone else was late, and the schools had closed, and city offices were closed, and there was speculation of a threat against the Transamerica building, that I realized it was not going to be anything like a normal day. When I heard the towers had collapsed was the first time I thought of going home.

My boss came to work around 9AM and said the BART platforms were packed with people leaving SF. By the time I left for home, it was around 10AM or a little later. The BART platforms were empty, everyone else had already left SF. The train had a light load. As we left Embarcadero, three BART cops in riot gear walked through the train checking out everybody and everything, real hard. That was when I first got scared. When I got off in Oakland, a lot of businesses were closed. I’m not aware that BART halted service.

Over the next year or so I developed a phobia about the transbay tube and would get off at Embaradero and wait for a less crowded train. My nerves really went to hell but I eventually got over it but it lasted for a long time. I was rattled the first few days after 9-11 but then at some point it became a real phobia. Funny thing is, I was not bothered about the trip to SF, only the trip home.

dndgirl said...

That morning, during my one-hour alarm radio wake-up, I vaguely heard them say something about a plane hitting the World Trade Center but was still too drowsy to pay attention. I got on the train at Castro Valley and when I got to Embarcadero, all the gates were open (free). I came up the escalator and saw some people coming down, which was odd. My building was closed and I saw someone from my office also trying to get in. We decided to go to McDonald's for breakfast and he told me that another plane had hit another building. I still didn't realize the magnitude of what had happened. We decided to go home (still free at Embarcadero) but I paid to get out at Castro Valley.

Then I went home and turned on the TV. And saw the buildings collapsed. Then I collapsed. I have never been so shaken in my life, crying uncontrollably. For the next couple of weeks, I felt safe on BART, but would start crying unexpectedly from time to time.

Eventually things got back to "normal" as much as that is possible. But I'm more alert now. About a year ago I saw an unattended backpack on a train and reported it. It was probably just forgotten.

bartmusings said...

Thanks for sharing your experiences.

Anonymous said...

The train was shut down for quite a few minutes in the tunnel before embarcadero. I remember becuase this is where I first heard of the attacks.