San Francisco - Oakland Bay Bridge Run?

San Francisco - Oakland Bay Bridge Run?

Post by Darryl Le » Sat, 19 Oct 2002 17:24:38

Years ago I recall hearing about a race that allowed people to
actually run across the SF-Oakland Bay Bridge, which normally is
closed to foot traffic.

The only reference I could find on the web was to the "Lifespan Bay
Bridge Run" on Sunday, Sept. 24, 1995.  Apparently co-sponsored by
the Association of Bay Area Government (ABAG), the details were as

> Lifespan Bay Bridge Race

> This event is the kick-off event for the 1995 United Way Campaign.
> The upper deck of the Bay Bridge will be closed on that Sunday, from 6 a.m.
> to 9 a.m., for runners, joggers, and walkers.

Was that it?  Is the race no longer run?  I always wanted to see what
it would be like to run on the Bay Bridge.  Did I miss my chance?

If anybody has any information about this race, or about the history
of the race, and its possible demise, I'd love to hear about it.



San Francisco - Oakland Bay Bridge Run?

Post by Darryl Le » Sat, 19 Oct 2002 17:37:12

Duh -- I always find these things *after* posting.  I guess insurance
concerns killed it.  No follow-up articles were found.  :P


   Caltrans ruling stalls bridge charity race

   Caroline Keough, OF THE EXAMINER STAFF
   Wednesday, September 20, 1995

Lifespan's insurance deemed inadequate

   An annual charity run that closed the top deck of the Bay Bridge the
   last three years has been postponed at the last minute because
   Caltrans doubled the insurance requirement to $20 million and
   organizers couldn't obtain a policy.

   The Lifespan race across the bridge, which raised $100,000 for United
   Way Charities and drew more than 7,500 runners last year, was
   scheduled for 7 to 9 a.m. Sunday.

   The state Department of Transportation doubled the race's insurance
   requirement from last year because of exploding liability lawsuit
   awards and the dangers of two-way traffic on the lower deck of the
   bridge, said Paul Hensley, Caltrans' district chief of operations.

   "Particularly on the Bay Bridge, you have people of extremely high
   incomes traveling, and that increases our exposure to liability,"
   Hensley said.

   Race director Peter King said Tuesday that he couldn't find an insurer
   who would cover all the requirements imposed by Caltrans. "We went to
   everyone, even Lloyd's of London," he said.

   When Lifespan couldn't get enough coverage, King and Caltrans worked
   out a plan to increase security during the race and reduce the
   insurance to last year's $10 million. But there wasn't enough time to
   add dozens of police officers to direct traffic, or order extra detour
   signs and marking cones.

   "I think (Caltrans) is acting responsibly, but from our perspective it
   was just an impossible situation," King said.

   Other such events that use state highways could be in jeopardy, King
   said, if the strict insurance demands are imposed on all

   "The precedent was really frightening," King said.

   "This would put a lot of (nonprofit) events out of business."

   But Hensley said Caltrans dealt with very few such events.

   For example, he said, "we don't deal with Bay to Breakers at all. It's
   through The City."

   Lifespan, which King said was the 10th-largest race in the country,
   has been tentatively rescheduled for Nov. 12, which is also the 59th
   anniversary of the opening of the Bay Bridge.

   "We'd like to still do it," King said. "But we've already spent money
   promoting this, and there's a million little things that would need to
   get done, and then there's concerns about the weather."