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Tue Jan 24, 2012, 12:49 PM

Railroad Industry Claims Mandated Safety Technology is Too Expensive

Railroad Industry Claims Mandated Safety Technology is Too Expensive

Twenty-one railroad accidents since 2001 could have been prevented with new safety technology that the industry is fighting against adopting. Using GPS, wireless communications and central control centers, Positive Train Control (PTC) automatically applies a trainís brakes when facing a collision or derailment.

The new system was mandated by federal legislation four years ago, after a head-on collision in California in September 2008 killed 25 and injured 135. Safety advocates argue that PTC could have saved those killed near Chatsworth, as well as another 28 people who died in train accidents over the past eleven years.

Railroad companies want to delay implementation of PTC for at least three years, claiming itís too expensive. They have found a sympathetic ear among Republicans in Congress, and have already won a key concession from the Obama administration regarding the safety technology, reducing the amount of track subject to the system.

The Rail Safety Improvement Act, signed by President George W. Bush on October 15, 2008, required the installation of PTC by the end of 2015, at a cost of $13 billion. Although one government agency, the National Transportation Safety Board, has advocated in favor of PTC, the agency in charge of supposedly enforcing the deadline, the Federal Railroad Administration, has taken the side of the rail industry.


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Reply Railroad Industry Claims Mandated Safety Technology is Too Expensive (Original post)
The Straight Story Jan 2012 OP
jwirr Jan 2012 #1

Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Tue Jan 24, 2012, 01:29 PM

1. That is really sad. I worked in a Railroad Museum and one of the displays we had was one

illustrating the safety measures that they were so proud of. Times have definitely changed. And not necessarily for the better.

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