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Congressman Sires Committed to Assisting New Jersey Transit Achieve Its Goal of Installing Positive Train Control by Deadline

Apr 30, 2018
Press Release

(Washington, D.C.) – Railroad safety is one of the most important issues facing New Jersey’s 8th Congressional District. As one of the nation’s most active transportation hubs, its residents rely on an efficient rail network that connects New Jersey to New York and keeps its thousands of daily passengers safe during their trips. Positive Train Control (PTC), which is an automatic speed control system, must be a crucial part of that safety structure.

“New Jersey Transit is one of the country’s most productive commuter rail systems and we have a responsibility to keep it running safely and efficiently,” said Congressman Sires. “That is why it is so important that the Federal mandate to install PTC on major railroads be met as quickly as possible. I am disappointed by recent reports indicating that NJ Transit will be needing yet another extension on the deadline to install PTC. Meeting these common-sense rail safety standards, which were first imposed a decade ago, should have been NJ Transit’s number one priority.”

Successfully installing PTC on New Jersey Transit’s systems includes hardware and software installation on their rail cars and computer systems operations, as well as training employees to manage it. This technology, which has been around for decades, is instrumental in preventing tragedies like the fatal 2016 train crash at Hoboken Terminal.

“I am committed to ensuring that Washington provides New Jersey with the resources it needs to finish installing this critical technology,” stated Congressman Sires. “The Fiscal Year 2018 omnibus bill includes major funding increases for rail safety and infrastructure projects grants which NJ Transit can use to continue installing PTC. It is now up to NJ Transit to make the most of these funding opportunities by expeditiously applying for and securing these grants, and finally meeting the Federal safety benchmarks that were first set 10 years ago.”