MTA completes Positive Train Control safety system on the LIRR
Your ride on the Long Island Rail Road just got safer thanks to the completion of an installation of a high-tech safety system.
MTA officials say the newly finished technology on LIRR trains will give commuters a safer ride.
"This technology can help stop accidents before they occur and keep our customers and employees safe," says MTA Chairman Patrick Foye. "It's a major advance in transit not only here in New York but across the nation."
The MTA announced it has completed its Positive Train Control project on all of its trains. Congress enacted the Rail Safety Improvement Act back on 2008, requiring train operators to implement PTC.
The technology prevents collisions on the rails by automatically slowing down or stopping trains that violate stop signals. The trains now communicate with dispatch offices, sharing information like train speed and position.
It comes after several deadly train accidents and derailments in recent years.
LIRR Commuter Council Vice Chairman Gerard Bringmann says PTC is just one more layer of safety for riders.
"It's a relief, they had a deadline of the 31st of this month and it's been a few years in the making, and a few hundred million dollars worth of work," says Bringmann.
Bringmann says it took the MTA seven years to complete the project, implementing it in phases. Last year, the LIRR added PTC on the Far Rockaway, Long Beach, Oyster Bay and West Hempstead branches.
According to the LIRR Commuter Council, the combined budget for PTC implementation on the LIRR and Metro-North was $1.6 billion.