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NTSB Urges Transit Systems to Check Signaling Equipment

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The federal safety board investigating this summer's deadly Metro crash says other transit systems need to urgently check and make sure their train signaling equipment is working properly. The National Transportation Safety Board says it has still hasn't pinpointed the exact cause of the June 22nd crash that killed 9 people and injured dozens of others.

But NTSB Chairmen Deborah Hersman says the agency is so concerned by what investigators have uncovered, that there is, in her words, "a pressing need" to make sure other transit lines with similar signaling systems are OK. The board is issuing nine safety recommendations to Metro and other agencies, six are deemed urgent.

The NTSB says it's discovered a malfunctioning track circuit near the crash site at the Fort Totten Station: the circuit, during tests, did not detect the presence of stopped trains.

Metro General Manager John Catoe says the transit agency is taking steps to make sure the system is safe. Catoe did not answer how many times Metro has been forced to stop service because it's discovered faltering circuits. He says Metro is working with the track circuit manufactures to fix the problem.

Patrick Madden reports...

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