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OCTA Supports Federal Rail Safety Legislation

Bill calls for nationwide positive train control implementation

ORANGE – The Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA) voted unanimously Monday to support the Rail Collision Prevention Act, a bill authored by California Senators Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer.

The proposed legislation calls for U.S. passenger railroads to develop and submit a plan to implement a positive train control system within 12 months of the bill’s passage.

“I’m very pleased the OCTA board has taken a position to support this legislation,” said OCTA board member Art Brown, also a Buena Park city councilman. “It’s critical that a uniform system be developed nationwide with the assistance of the Federal Railroad Administration.”

The legislation, Senate Bill 3943, requires positive train control system implementation by the end of 2012 in areas that are higher safety risks and implementation by the end of 2014 for all other passenger rail lines.

As proposed in the legislation, failure to comply and implement a positive train control system would expose a rail carrier to a fine of up to $100,000.

Brown, one of two OCTA representatives on the Metrolink Board of Directors, on behalf of his colleagues offered condolences to all those who were affected by the Sept. 12 collision in Chatsworth between a Metrolink and Union Pacific train.

“What occurred was a tragedy and it is our intent to do everything in our power to prevent a collision from occurring again,” Brown said. “Safety has been and will continue to be a top priority for both Metrolink and OCTA.

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