Federal regulators to assess safety practices at Metro-North

metro north train
A Metro-North passenger train derails en route to New York City near the Spuyten Duyvil station, killing four people and wounding more than 70 others on Dec. 1 in the Bronx.
Credit: Getty

Federal regulators on Thursday launched a 60-day safety assessment of Metro-North Railroad following the Dec. 1 derailment that killed four people and left 70 others injured, officials said.

Teams will review the commuter railroad’s compliance with federal regulations, its procedures and practices and its safety culture, according to a statement by the U.S. Department of Transportation.

Federal investigators have said the early morning train from Poughkeepsie was traveling nearly three times the 30-mile-per-hour speed limit when it left the tracks near the end of its run to New York’s Grand Central Terminal.

The train engineer has told authorities he became dazed and lost focus before the crash.

“Safety is our top priority, and this in-depth investigation will help ensure that Metro-North is doing everything possible to improve its safety record,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx in the statement.

Transportation experts will look at track and signal maintenance and repair, communications, control center procedures, fatigue management and medical requirements for operating crew, among other safety checks.

The DOT’s Federal Railroad Administration will issue its findings and recommendations once the assessment is complete.

Federal regulators issued an emergency order last week requiring Metro-North to implement urgent temporary safety measures to make sure its crews did not exceed speed limits.

They also ordered the railroad to come up with modifications to its control systems in order to improve mechanisms providing advance warning to engineers about excessive train speed.

The train that derailed was equipped with an alert system which was supposed to set off an audible alarm if the engineer did not touch the controls every 25 seconds. However, the alarm system was in the unmanned diesel locomotive pushing the train from the rear and not installed in the control cab where the engineer was driving the train.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

MAP: New York City Street Closures August 22,…

The Percy Sutton Harlem 5K and NYC Family Health Walk-a-thon and Pakistan Day Parade and Fair will cause traffic delays and street closures in New York City this weekend. Plan…

International

U.N. nuclear inquiry on Iran seen making slow…

The U.N. nuclear watchdog appears to have made only limited progress so far in getting Iran to answer questions about its suspected atomic bomb research, diplomatic sources said on Friday,…

National

Violence-weary Missouri town sees second night of calm

By Nick Carey and Carey GillamFERGUSON Mo. (Reuters) - The violence-weary town of Ferguson, Missouri, saw a second straight evening of relative calm on Thursday…

National

Journalist James Foley's parents, after call with pope,…

The parents of James Foley, the American journalist killed by Islamic State militants in Iraq, on Friday called for prayer and support to free the remaining captives held by Islamic…

Television

Recap: 'The Knick,' Season 1, Episode 3, 'The…

The third episode of Steven Soderbergh's "The Knick" finds Dr. Thackery (Clive Owen) meeting an old flame and other characters embracing self-destruction.

Music

Webcast: Watch Polyphonic Spree live on Sunday Aug.…

Polyphonic Spree singer Tim DeLaughter sits with Metro Music Editor Pat Healy for a chat and then the big band performs live. It begins on Sunday at 9:30 pm

Movies

Matthew Weiner on directing 'Are You Here' and…

"Mad Men" creator Matthew Weiner discusses his movie "Are You Here," his history writing comedy and the tiny movie he directed in 1996 you can't see.

Movies

Michael Chiklis on his football past and 'When…

Michael Chiklis remembers playing football in high school and how that prepped him to play a coach in "When the Game Stands Tall."

NFL

3 things we learned about the Giants in…

The Giants claimed the Snoopy trophy in a battle of MetLife Stadium tenants Friday night. But more importantly, the offense finally showed some life in…

NFL

3 things we learned about the Jets in…

The Jets lost the Snoopy Bowl, 35-24, to the Giants, losing the trophy and local bragging rights.

NFL

Fantasy football draft guide: How to draft your…

Many are wondering if we’re entering a new age in fantasy football drafting — one where running backs take a backseat.

NFL

Jets vs. Giants: 3 Giants storylines to watch

The Giants have plenty to work on as they reach the dress rehearsal preseason game Friday night against the rival Jets.

Wellbeing

Asics is giving away free gear around NYC…

Asics wants to see you on the court - and in the stands for the U.S. Open, which begins Monday - by giving away free…

Sex

Big weddings may lead to long-term happiness

Dreaming of a big wedding? A new study indicates that the longer your guest list, the happier you’ll be in the long run. l A…

Sex

Online dating for every generation

Frank Jackson and his mother Maggie are like lots of modern families: They have dinner together regularly, keep each other updated on their lives —…

Wellbeing

Going green could be the key to getting…

If we could just pursue the things that would actually make us happy, we could help the environment too, according to a New York researcher.…