Security and Safety

Most commuter rail systems won’t meet positive train control deadline

Posted on June 3, 2015

Photo: Steven Vance/Flickr
Photo: Steven Vance/Flickr

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Many investigators say Positive Train Control (PTC), an automated safety system, could have prevented last month’s Amtrak train derailment. Amtrak officials have said they will have PTC installed throughout the northeast corridor by the end of this year, which is the deadline mandated by Congress, according to NPR.

But the vast majority of other commuter railroad systems, which provided nearly 500 million rides in 2014, won’t be able to fully implement positive train control for several more years, the report said.

Some commuter rail agencies will need another three to five years to complete PTC installations because of the scale and complexity of the systems and the resources needed, according to American Public Transportation Association President/CEO Michael Melaniphy.

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