NCTD increases trespassing enforcement

With access to the beach just over the railroad tracks, it’s common for beachgoers to cross the track illegally in Del Mar. But crossing the track illegally or trespassing on the railroad right-of-way is more likely to draw a citation these days.

Since the start of August, the North County Transit District has increased enforcement against trespassers along both the Oceanside to San Diego and Oceanside to Escondido rail corridors.

Councilman Don Mosier, who serves on the NCTD Board of Directors, said the board wanted to step up enforcement to address public safety.

“We’ve had three deaths in the last two years in the Del Mar stretch of the train track,” Mosier said during the Aug. 1 Del Mar City Council meeting. “That’s a very high number for that short mile-and-a-half stretch that goes through Del Mar.”

Increased enforcement against trespassers, he said, will also help protect the bluff.

In mid-July, a portion of the bluff collapsed near 10th Street cross from Ocean Avenue in Del Mar. There were no injuries.

“The SANDAG engineers want to keep all pedestrian traffic off the top of the bluff because that traffic is killing the vegetation and making the erosion problem worse,” Mosier said.

Mosier added that there will be a bluff restoration project as soon as funding is secured, which is expected within the next year.

“Hopefully that will be in the wintertime, but you should know those projects are pretty noisy and disruptive for Del Mar, so I’ll update you as soon as we have a construction start date,” he said.

People crossing the track illegally or trespassing on the railroad right-of-way will face criminal penalties for their violation of the law by NCTD’s Transit Enforcement Division Officers or the San Diego County Sheriff’s Transit Enforcement Services Unit. The penalties can result in fines up to $500 and/or six months in jail.