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December 10, 2019updated 11 Dec 2019 5:20am

MBTA safety review panel submits recommendations

The safety review panel of the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) has provided 34 recommendations with 61 corrective actions to increase the safety of travellers and staff.

The safety review panel of the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) has provided 34 recommendations with 61 corrective actions to increase the safety of travellers and staff.

Three experts in transport safety compose the panel. These experts are US transportation secretary Ray LaHood, former Federal Transit Administration acting administrator Carolyn Flowers, and former NYC Transit president Carmen Bianco, compose the panel.

The panel was set up in June after several incidents of derailments and other safety issues.

It has collected data from 100 interviews, six focus groups, and site visits, and made six major safety policy recommendations.

The safety review panel said that MBTA will have to establish safety objectives and targets according to the best practices of the industry.

The authority needs to identify the areas of deferred maintenance and allocate enough resources for data collection. Following this, it must adhere to the Federal Railroad Administration standards.

It also recommended that MBTA add more transit professionals into their team and reduce the frequency and burden of FMCB meetings. This will ensure that employees are more attentive towards operations and safety.

FMCB chairman Joseph Aiello said: “For the past 3 years, we have been advancing safety through our investment in repairing aging tracks, signals, and power systems through the State of Good Repair program.

“It is, in a very real sense, a safety programme. The safety panel’s report underscores that we also need to invest in the operating managers and workers who operate these systems to instil a culture that makes safety our highest priority.”

MBTA general manager Steve Poftak said: “The MBTA has been working aggressively to improve safety across the board, and we have already implemented or begun implementing many of the recommendations of the safety review panel.”

 

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