WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The leading U.S. rail regulator on Thursday ordered Amtrak to take immediate steps to improve the safety of its busiest route, formalizing a request that the company made days after a deadline derailment in Philadelphia.
The Federal Railroad Administration ordered Amtrak to identify dangerous curves along the Northeast Corridor between Washington and Boston where slower speeds could reduce the risk of mishap.
Amtrak, the nation's leading passenger service, must then activate controls that would slow down a runaway train and otherwise control the speed, according to the FRA order.
- PHOTOS: New art and old relics at Mickey Mouse's NYC gallery 25 Pictures
- PHOTOS: See Yes on 3 supporters react to historic transgender rights Question 3 win 11 Pictures
- PHOTOS: A look back at Queen performing in the 1970s and 1980s 22 Pictures
- All of these celebrities have had their nudes leaked 35 Pictures
- PHOTOS: A look at Idris Elba's style through the years 20 Pictures
- PHOTOS: Heidi Klum's annual Halloween party and other amazing celebrity costumes 17 Pictures
- These are the spookiest cities per capita in the U.S. 5 Pictures
- Food Network star talks pumpkin carving 1 Pictures
- Who is Alexander Edwards, Amber Rose's new boyfriend? 9 Pictures
- Is Cardi B pregnant again? This tweet has people guessing 6 Pictures
- Natural Museum's best wildlife photos of the year 5 Pictures
"Amtrak must identify other actions it will take to ensure compliance with speed reductions," according to the order.
Last week, an Amtrak derailment in Philadelphia killed eight passengers and sent more than 200 to local hospitals.
The system FRA wants in place is called automatic train control (ATC), which detects when a train is traveling above the speed limit, sending a signal to the engineer. If the operator fails to act, the system will automatically apply the brakes.
A more advanced system, called positive train control (PTC), is due to be in force by the end of the year and Amtrak has said it expects to achieve that deadline.
(Reporting by Patrick Rucker and David Morgan; Editing by Richard Chang)