The National Transportation
Safety Board determined that last year's fatal collision of two Washington
Metropolitan Area Transit Authority trains on the Red Line in
Washington, D.C., was a failure of the track circuit modules that caused the
automatic train control system to lose detection of one train, allowing a
second train to strike it from the rear. The NTSB also cited WMATA for its
failure to ensure that a verification test developed after a 2005 incident near
Rosslyn station was used system-wide. This test would have identified the
faulty track circuit before the accident.
Union Pacific employees achieved the
best first-half-of-the-year safety performance in company history. For the
period January 1 through June 30, Union Pacific's employee reportable injury
rate was 1.31, a nearly 10 percent improvement over the previous company best
1.45 reportable rate for the first six months of 2009. Union Pacific's employee
injury rate improved 50 percent from 2001 to 2009.
The U.S. House of
Representatives unanimously voted July 27, 2010, in support of a resolution
honoring America's freight railroad industry and its employees.
Adding yet another voice
to the chorus objecting to a proposed increase in freight rail traffic in St. Louis
Park, Minn., the city's school board weighed in last week with its concerns,
the Star Tribune reports. At a special meeting, the board passed a resolution
in full support of two resolutions passed recently by the City Council.
The City Council in
Niagara Falls, N.Y., is expected to take the first concrete steps toward
transforming the historic old Customs House into a combination passenger
railroad station, bus station and trail head for bike riders and hikers, as
well as a tourist attraction of its own and a museum commemorating the slave
escape route called the Underground Railroad, The Buffalo News reports.
and planning firm TKDA was selected as part of a design-build team with Coleman
Industrial Construction to complete Mobility First Improvements at Amtrak's
passenger stations in California and Oregon. This work is part of the American
Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 for rebuilding and modernizing
infrastructure and equipment. TKDA is currently providing engineering services
to Amtrak in more than 10 states.
Hatch Mott MacDonald recently hired key, high-level
staff members at several of its U.S. office locations. Frank Facciolo joins
Hatch Mott MacDonald's New York City office as a senior project manager for
rail/transit projects and has 21 years of experience in infrastructure,
transportation, and design-build projects in the N.Y. Metropolitan area and in
California. John Cross joins HMM's Tallahassee, Fla., office as a senior project
manager with more than 30 years of professional engineering experience in both
the private and public sectors.
A Pioneer Railcorp
representative left no uncertainty about the railroad's position regarding a
proposed toll increase for the use of Keokuk's swing-span railroad bridge, the
Daily Gate City reports. Keokuk Junction Railway, which runs the trains on the
bridge, is a subsidiary of Pioneer Railcorp.
(PST), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Union Pacific Corporation, has added a 3-D simulation-training
program to its capabilities. The program produces realistic 3-D simulation
training solutions for a variety of industries including railroad,
construction, mining and shipping. For example, railroad-specific simulations
for conductors, locomotive engineers and remote-control locomotive operators
are used in certification training to enhance railroad safety and improve
operating efficiency. Implementing this program accelerates and expands
employee-training opportunities previously constrained by equipment
availability and travel.
The Federal Transit
Administration has committed to a 50-percent share for the Portland-Milwaukie
Light Rail Project in Oregon. TriMet had requested a 60 percent federal share,
since all previous light rail projects were funded by at least a 60 percent
federal share. The 50-percent federal share would be capped at a maximum of