Washington, D.C. - Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Ranking Member of the Environment and Public Works Committee, issued the statement below following Senate passage of H.R. 3819, which provides a three- to five-year safety delay for railroads to install Positive Train Control (PTC).
Senator Boxer said: “I want to express my disappointment that I was unable to shorten the delay of the Positive Train Control safety mandate on railroads. However, I believe that a strong team of Senators brought enough pressure to finally approve Sarah Feinberg to be the Administrator of the Federal Railroad Administration. If we care about safety, we need to have someone leading the agency, and Sarah Feinberg is passionate about safety. My colleagues and I will continue to shine a spotlight to ensure that PTC is implemented properly within the new time frame.”
For more than 45 years, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has advocated that PTC technology be implemented in our rail system. NTSB has calculated that over those 45 years, 146 accidents or derailments could have been avoided with implementation of PTC, and at least 300 fatalities and almost 7,000 injuries could have been prevented.