Breaking News

Batory to industry: “Seize the fourth quarter”

Federal Railroad Administrator Ron Batory on Oct. 17 completed a second series of meetings with senior leadership of Positive Train Control (PTC) system suppliers that are directly associated with the eight railroads FRA has identified as “most at risk of not meeting statutory requirements by the end of the year.”

Opinion

The clock is running on untreated OSA

Timely accident investigations are critical to the future of safe transportation operations, for a number of reasons. First, they must begin expeditiously. As the clock runs, evidence can deteriorate or become corrupted. Witness memories of events fade, sometimes to the detriment of actual fact-finding. Second, the search for cause factors and efforts to remediate are delayed, leaving people and property at risk of more accidents and incidents caused by the same risk factors. Third, as time passes, other accidents and incidents demand investigation, putting a strain on investigatory resources.

PTC, a different approach

Major train derailments and collisions can be spectacular. Their economic and environmental consequences are considerable, and they kill and injure people. In response, over the past 40 years, pressed by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) and Congress (by statute in 2008) the railroads have been implementing Positive Train Control (PTC) systems to reduce the potential for these crashes.

Amtrak reform: Attention must be paid

Watching Washington, October 2018: From operating plans to marketing to pricing, change is relentless in railroading. Where railroaders once every five years looked with suspicion at all aspects of their system, and made substantial changes after 10, scientific advances, new processes and innovative applications propelled by unremitting competition have put the transformation process on steroids.