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BART strike ends with another late-night press conference

on October 21, 2013

At a little after 10 p.m. Monday night, officials made the announcement the Bay Area had been waiting for: the BART strike is officially over.

Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1555 President Antonette Bryant said the unions and management reached “a tentative agreement.”

BART General Manager Grace Crunican said the offer was more than management wanted to pay.

The end of the strike marks the near-immediate beginning of renewed BART service.

“We are trying to get all trains running as early as 6 a.m. tomorrow morning,” Crunican said, adding later that some trains would be in motion as early as 4 a.m. Tuesday.

Officials did not guarantee a flawless return. BART spokesperson Alicia Trost said to expect hiccups tomorrow. There is a lot of preparation that must be done, such as making sure money is in the machines, before all is back to normal, she said.

It is possible that service won’t be back to full capacity until late afternoon or even later.

Mayor Jean Quan also weighed in on the end of the strike in a prepared statement: “These have been tough negotiations for all concerned, but at the center of it have always been the riders themselves. The strike has been a burden and a hardship for them, and that has driven many of us to keep the pressure high on both sides to do what it took to end this strike.”

Quan was present for part of the night’s negotiations and the announcement.

Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom also expressed his pleasure at the end of the BART strike.

“The most important lesson is that this can’t happen again,” Newsom said.

BART has been on strike since Friday at midnight, after about a week of marathon negotiations, and a war of nerves for hundreds of thousands of Bay Area commuters.

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