Wednesday, February 19, 2014
 

 

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NTSB calls on Metro-North to install recorders, speed signs

WASHINGTON – The National Transportation Safety Board Tuesday issued a series of safety recommendations to the Metro-North Railroad calling for the use of inward and outward facing audio and image recorders and the installation of approach permanent speed restrictions signs along the rights-of-way.

The call for the safety measures came about following the NTSB’s investigation into the fatal December 1 train crash in the Bronx that killed four people.

In that crash, the southbound train, consisting of seven passenger cars and a locomotive, derailed on the Hudson Line near Spuyten Duyvil Station.

“The images and audio captured by recorders can be invaluable to our investigators,” said NTSB Chairwoman Deborah Hersman. “Understanding what is happening inside the cab just prior to a crash can provide information about how to prevent future accidents.”

Investigators learned that while Metro-North had posted signs for temporary speed restrictions throughout its rail property, it did not use signage for permanent speed restriction areas including the area where the accident occurred.

Since the crash, the railroad has installed signs to aid operating crews at four locations with permanent speed restrictions, including the derailment area; however, the NTSB believes that Metro-North should use a more systematic approach and install signage at all locations where permanent speed restrictions are in place.