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California rail line fined for worker deaths

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- Workplace safety officials have fined a San Francisco Bay Area commuter rail line $210,000 over the deaths of two of its workers on tracks.

The California Division of Occupational Safety and Health issued the fine against the Bay Area Rapid Transit agency on Thursday, citing BART for what it said were three serious safety violations.

Fifty-eight-year-old Christopher Sheppard and 66-year-old Laurence Daniels were struck and killed by a BART train while they inspected tracks in October. The incident occurred while BART workers were on strike.

BART has said Sheppard and Daniels were working under a practice that made them solely responsible for their safety.

The agency later changed those rules, requiring trains to slow down, stop or change course as they approach track workers.

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