The California rail system turns from tragedy to triumph as it moves toward completing positive train control installation on its rail lines by 2015. The expedited effort was spurred in part by the 2008 collision that killed 25 passengers. For many systems, though, gaining radio frequency spectrum remains a challenge.
While funding and technology integration remain key issues, some U.S. rail operators are looking to meet the 2015 Congressional deadline, including Southern California’s Metrolink, which aims to have its system in place by next year.
In December 2010, record Southern California rains, causing damage such as flooded tracks, forced Metrolink to scramble to maintain services for its customers.
Despite facing divergent issues, CEOs for both the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority and Southern California's Metrolink say they are maintaining morale and working on solving problems by employing this method.
With the upcoming 2015 deadline for installation, positive train control systems are a main focus for rail operators. Train car technologies that reduce passenger injuries in a collision and other security systems are also in the works.
Following the Sept. 12 Metrolink rail accident in Chatsworth, Calif., the operation has taken steps to bolster its safety measures, including adding a crewmember in the lead cab and making equipment and track improvements.
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