Freight train industry to miss safety deadline

Only one-fifth of its track will have mandatory safety technology to prevent catastrophic collisions and derailments installed by the deadline set by Congress, the freight railroad industry said Wednesday.
By JOAN LOWY, Associated Press Published: April 16, 2014

In brief

Railroads may not meet deadline

Only one-fifth of its track will have mandatory safety technology to prevent catastrophic collisions and derailments installed by the deadline set by Congress, the freight railroad industry said Wednesday.

An Association of American Railroads report said about 20 percent of roughly 60,000 miles of track being equipped with the technology will meet the Dec. 31, 2015, deadline. The association previously estimated 40 percent would meet the deadline.

The association blamed the Federal Communications Commission, saying the FCC is holding up the placement of about 20,000 antennas on track wayside that are necessary to complete installation of the technology, known as positive train control or PTC.

The FCC wants railroads to ensure each antenna will not disturb sites important to American Indians.

Associated Press