Based on the findings of a new report, APTA recommends establishing a Commuter Rail Insurance Program at the U.S. Department of Transportation to provide insurance to commuter rail agencies that operate commuter rail services in the U.S.
The report, “APTA Recommendation on Commuter Rail Liability Insurance,” outlines how the commuter rail insurance market has become significantly more expensive and has much less capacity in terms of insurers willing to participate. As a result, agencies have been forced to turn to foreign markets for commuter rail insurance. Moreover, the report found that the market will not correct or improve on its own without federal involvement. The cost and scarcity of insurance coverage for commuter rail operators threatens the stability of commuter rail services across the country.
“Commuter rail is a key component of improved public transit infrastructure, enhanced mobility, economic recovery, and addressing climate change. Without federal intervention, commuter rail agencies will continue to face a significantly reduced market capacity for coverage along with unreasonable premium costs, threatening operations” said APTA President/CEO Paul P. Skoutelas. “The stability that federal involvement could bring would help foster the desired investment in infrastructure, as well as addressing the economic and operating challenges that these agencies face.”