Contra Costa measles patient commuted on BART

Contra Costa County health officials confirmed its first case of measles since the outbreak began in December.

Officials are warning BART riders that a Contra Costa County resident had commuted from home to work in San Francisco on BART while infectious with the disease.

The person traveled between the Lafayette and Montgomery stations during the morning and evening commute from 6 a.m. to 8 a.m. and 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Feb. 4, 5, and 6. The virus can stay in the air for up to two hours, health officials said.

The Contra Costa Public Health Services and the San Francisco Department of Public Health are working together to get more information on the person’s movements and notifying people who were in close contact with the person including the person’s employer.

Officials said the person had also spent time at E&O Kitchen and Bar on 314 Sutter St. in San Francisco on the evening of Feb. 4 from 5:30 p.m. 7 p.m.

People who are vaccinated are highly unlikely to get the measles, even with contact of a contagious person. Those who are not vaccinated have higher risk of exposure, health officials said.

Erika Jenssen, communicable disease program chief with Contra Costa Public Health, said in a press statement, that it is not clear how the person became in contract with the disease. She said statewide outbreak shows the need for people to get vaccinated:

“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.”

Health officials said anyone with symptoms of the measles such as a high fever, runny nose, watery red eyes, rash on the body (develops after the fever) should contact their health provider immediately.