Larry Levine

Larry Levine

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Federal Transit Administration has threatened to withhold funding from the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (Metro) and shut it down if it does not comply with safety directives issued by both the FTA and the National Transportation Safety Board, The Washington Times reports.

The threat came just days after Metro officials announced a yearlong plan to overhaul the ailing subway system and two days after a third-rail explosion had thrown metal shards onto the platform at the Federal Center station.

According to documents, the FTA directives require Metro to quickly make four fixes to its culture: regard safety as more important than operational convenience, reduce the risk of fire and smoke, improve emergency preparedness and increase training for Metro workers via a “safety standdown.”

Failure to comply would result in the federal agency withholding 25% of Metro’s federal funds, along with “issuing restrictions, closures or prohibitions on service as necessary.” The FTA assumed oversight of Metro safety in October. For the full story, click here.

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