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Amtrak Accident Investigators Find No Mechanical Problems in Analysis

Image: Amtrak Accident Investigators Find No Mechanical Problems in Analysis
(Elizabeth Robertson/The Philadelphia Inquirer via AP, file)

By    |   Tuesday, 02 Jun 2015 03:29 PM

The Amtrak accident’s examination continues as federal investigators reported Tuesday no mechanical problems have been found at the site of last month's derailment just outside Philadelphia.

The National Transportation Safety Board’s report stated that “investigators have examined the train braking systems, signals, and track geometry” and so far, “no anomalies have been noted,” according to Fox News.

The May 12 crash killed eight people and sent more than 200 to the hospital.

Federal Railroad Administration head Sarah Feinberg addressed the House Transportation Committee during a hearing and said that, while a cause had not been officially determined, speed — a “human factor” — was a large influence in the derailment, Fox reported.

The case is still looking into why the train accelerated to 106 mph when heading into the 50-mph speed-limit curve where it derailed.

Amtrak engineer Brandon Bostian experienced an injury to the head during the crash and told investigators he cannot recall what occurred prior to the incident.

While the train was installed with some recording devices, none provided information as to what occurred inside the engineer’s cab.

The NTSB is now looking into Bostian’s phone records to see if the engineer had been texting or making phone calls prior to the crash.

“Although the records appear to indicate that calls were made, text messages sent, and data used on the day of the accident, investigators have not yet made a determination if there was any phone activity during the time the train was being operated,” the report read, according to Fox News.

The cable station also reported officials continue looking into information of vandals throwing rocks and objects at the trains.

The Rail Safety Improvement Act of 2008 placed a deadline on Amtrak to update technology on its railroad by the end of this year, Fox News reported. Most of the lines, however, are not expected to meet the goal, and a proposal has been put forth to give the trains a few more years.

NTSB Chairman Christopher Hart testified at the hearing, according to Fox, saying a system that automatically stops trains when they begin to go too fast called Positive Train Control “would have prevented this accident.”

Amtrak CEO and President Joseph Boardman told Congress this technology will be installed throughout the entire Northeast Corridor by the end of the year, USA Today noted.

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The Amtrak accident’s examination continues as federal investigators reported Tuesday no mechanical problems have been found at the site of last month's derailment just outside Philadelphia.
amtrak, accident, mechanical, issues, human, error
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2015-29-02
Tuesday, 02 Jun 2015 03:29 PM
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