Not that I’m super-surprised, but the 38 Geary (or as some call it, the Dirty-Eight) was recently found to be one of the most dangerous bus routes in the city. It came in second in “security incidents,” just behind the 14 Mission. The 38 and 38L are among the most frequently run buses in SF, so it’s uncertain if the lines are more violent on average, or if they just have more total incidents. At any rate, this MUNI report says the most frequent crimes are vandalism, disturbance/disorderly conduct, and passenger assault.
I’ve never had an incident that’s been more than merely unpleasant on the 38, mostly it’s been inebriated dudes looking to make conversation on their way to the VA hospital. But if you want to keep the unpleasantness to a minimum, avoid the 3pm to 6pm crush and Fridays, says this article by the SF Examiner. Despite the high number of crimes on the 38 and 38L, SFers on Yelp seem to have “a soft spot” for the bus which (in my mind) acts as a divider between the “plausible” and “busted” parts of the Tendernob. Yelp commenter Joe C. perfectly sums up my feelings: “It may be crowded and dirty but it’s always running…” Word.