PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The Amtrak crash in Philadelphia that killed five people earlier this year had many lawmakers calling for immediate implementation of a speed enforcement system, one the National Transportation Safety Board says could have prevented that derailment.
Earlier Tuesday, Congress passed a bill delaying the mandate for railroads to put in those safety upgrades.
The day after that fatal Amtrak crash in May, Amtrak CEO Joseph Boardman promised safety upgrades would be made soon. “We will complete this by the end of the year,” he said.
But now lawmakers on Capital Hill are giving Amtrak 3-5 years to implement those changes. “They agreed that they will push as hard as they can to get it done in 3 years. They have shown good faith that they were trying to do it. they run into some problems with wiring and some of these wireless airwaves,” says Pennsylvania Congressman Bob Brady.
Brady says it is in everyone’s best interest that the railroads get more time to finish up those safety modifications. “The problem if we were to penalize them now, they would probably have to stop some trail rail transportation and that would hurt them, that would hurt all of us,” he said.
More than 200 people were injured in that Amtrak crash in Philadelphia.