The UCSF community suffered a great loss this last week with the tragic accidental death of psychiatrist Kevin Mack, MD, MS. On behalf of our entire campus, I want to again convey my deepest condolences to Dr. Mack’s family, friends and colleagues.
I also want to acknowledge that others were injured in this accident, and to wish them a speedy and full recovery.
What has made this tragedy all the more difficult – for all of us – is that it resulted from an accident involving one of our own shuttle vehicles. In the days since the accident, UCSF’s executive team has focused on identifying, evaluating and implementing measures to further ensure our community’s safety when riding on our shuttles. As a result of this work, the following measures have been taken or will soon be taken:
- Over the last few days, transportation supervisors have conducted one-on-one meetings with our shuttle drivers, emphasizing our support for them at this difficult time and reviewing the key safe driving techniques included in our regular and extensive UCSF shuttle driver training program.
- We will begin installing lap belts in the next few weeks – with a goal of outfitting our entire fleet by the end of August. Seat belts are not required on the type of shuttle vehicles we use in our fleet, but we want to make them available to you.
- We are creating a “How am I driving?” telephone hotline, advertised inside and outside the shuttles, so any feedback – negative or positive – can be quickly reported and addressed. More information on this hotline will be available in August. In the interim, shuttle feedback can be communicated online via the existing transportation feedback form: http://campuslifeservices.ucsf.edu/transportation/feedback/
- We are launching a comprehensive review of all aspects of our shuttle operations, engaging experts – from UCSF and other universities that operate shuttles, and including other external transportation experts – to review our policies, procedures and practices, and to make recommendations.
These measures add to the many safeguards already in place to support our shuttle service, which travels more miles in a dense urban setting than most if not all similar services across the UC system. Because of the many questions that have arisen since last week’s accident, we also will soon be posting detailed information on the home page of the University’s web site, www.ucsf.edu, about our overall shuttle operation, including driver training and oversight.
I am committed to ensuring that our community is informed about the many ways we are already working to keep our shuttles safe and the steps we are taking to identify and evaluate additional safety measures.
Susan Desmond-Hellmann, MD, MPH
Arthur and Toni Rembe Rock Distinguished Professor