A Contra Costa Country resident commuting to and from work in San Francisco last week may have exposed some BART riders to measles, health officials said today.
Officials with Contra Costa Health Services and the San Francisco Department of Public Health said risk of contracting measles by being exposed to the disease on BART is low, but riders should nonetheless be aware of the situation.
The person traveled between the Lafayette and Montgomery BART stations during the morning and evening commutes from 6 a.m. to 8 a.m. and from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. last Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. The person also spent time at E&O Kitchen and Bar, a restaurant located at 314 Sutter St. in San Francisco, on Feb. 4 between 5:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
People who are vaccinated or have had measles are unlikely to catch the disease, health officials said. However, those who have not previously been vaccinated are at high risk if exposed.
It's the first confirmed case of measles in Contra Costa County since the statewide outbreak in December, county health officials said. The state reported 107 measles cases on Monday, in the outbreak that began in late December.
Measles is a highly contagious illness, and if someone coughs or sneezes, virus droplets linger in the air and on surfaces up to two hours. Because BART trains circulate through the system, anyone who used BART during that time could have been exposed.
"Measles is circulating in the Bay Area and we don’t know yet where this person was exposed,” said Erika Jenssen, Communicable Disease Program Chief with Contra Costa Public Health.
“The ongoing measles outbreak in California highlights the need for people to be vaccinated, and this is just another example of how interconnected our region is and how important it is for everyone to be up to date on their immunizations.”