Security and Safety

Feds say railroads must meet PTC deadline

Posted on January 4, 2018

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WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Washington Post reports that the Trump Administration plans to hold the passenger and freight rail industries to a December deadline to install Positive Train Control (PTC), which may have prevented last month’s fatal Amtrak accident in Washington state, the Philadelphia derailment that killed eight passengers in 2015, and scores of other train wrecks.

The implementation of PTC was postponed by Congress, which extended a deadline to have the systems in place from 2015 until December of this year and left open the possibility of an additional extension to 2020. For the full story, click here.

The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) released a letter from Secretary Elaine L. Chao to all the nation’s Class I railroads, intercity passenger railroads, and state and local transit authorities stressing the urgency and importance of safely implementing positive train control (PTC) systems in the upcoming year to meet the Dec. 31, 2018 deadline, as mandated by Congress.

“Advancing the implementation of Positive Train Control is among the most important rail safety initiatives on the Department’s agenda,” said Secretary Chao. “The FRA leadership has been directed to work with your organization’s leadership to help create an increased level of urgency to underscore the imperative of meeting existing expecta­tions for rolling out this critical rail-safety technology.”

To read the full letter, click here.

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