Metro-North outlines safety upgrades

New York – The Metro-North Railroad has released a report outlining safety improvements it has made since a series of deadly incidents last year.

In its report, which details the railroad’s “100-Day Action Plan,” Metro-North said it has fully implemented 21 of 32 safety initiatives recommended by a number of sources – including the Federal Railroad Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board – and has begun to implement seven others. The initiatives include installing new alerts and video cameras in engineers’ cabs, creating a computer-based track-worker safety system, and enhancing track inspection and maintenance.

The launch of the action plan followed several high-profile incidents, including a Dec. 1 derailment that killed four passengers and injured more than 70 others. The train’s engineer told investigators that he felt “dazed” in the moments leading up to the crash.

A subsequent investigation and report from the Federal Railroad Administration criticized Metro-North for emphasizing on-time performance over safety, and lawmakers in the House introduced a bill on May 9 intended to reduce fatigue among workers in the rail industry.