Government Issues

FRA releases Metra safety assessment findings

Posted on October 22, 2014

The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) announced the findings and recommendations from its focused safety assessment of Chicago’s Metra.

The assessment finds Metra to be generally compliant with federal safety regulations, but also directs the commuter railroad to take immediate steps to enhance its safety culture, which is an area of concern, and to better utilize safety technology.

FRA identified and prioritized specific safety concerns and actions Metra should take to mitigate them:

  • Empower conductors to prioritize the safety of operations over collecting fares, on-time performance and customer service.
  • Ensure heightened crew interactions during higher risk operations.
  • Establish new procedures to strengthen the flow of information between operating lines and Metra headquarters.
  • Add technical skills training for managers.
  • Add safety measures and procedures that would provide a level of safety redundancy to protect crossover movements.
  • Implement a Confidential Close Call Reporting System (C3RS).
  • Immediately prioritize the acquisition, testing and installation of Positive Train Control systems that monitor and control train movements to provide increased safety.

FRA announced the launch of the safety assessment on June 6, 2014 after three serious incidents occurred between May 27, 2014 and June 3, 2014, which resulted in the decertification of three Metra locomotive engineers.

To review the entire report, click here.

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