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Safety Recommendation Details

Safety Recommendation R-80-052
Details
Synopsis: ON JULY 17, 1980, SOUTHEASTERN PENNSYLVANIA TRANSPORTATION AUTHORITY (SEPTA)-CONSOLIDATED RAIL CORPORATION (CONRAIL) COMMUTER TRAIN NO. 472 STRUCK THE REAR OF SEPTA-CONRAIL COMMUTER TRAIN NO. 406 WHILE IT WAS STANDING ON THE NO. 2 TRACK EAST OF THE STATION AT NORTH WALES, PENNSYLVANIA. THE REAR CAR OF TRAIN NO. 406 OVERRODE AND DESTROYED THE EMPTY LEAD CAR OF TRAIN NO. 472. OF THE ESTIMATED 321 PERSONS ON THE 2 TRAINS, 64 PASSENGERS AND 3 CREWMEMBERS RECEIVED INJURIES. DAMAGE TO THE EQUIPMENT WAS ESTIMATED AT $1,475,000.
Recommendation: THE NTSB RECOMMENDS THAT THE CONSOLIDATED RAIL CORPORATION: DEVELOP AND IMPLEMENT A PROGRAM FOR TRAINING AND PERIODICALLY REQUALIFYING OPERATING PERSONNEL ON THE MECHANICAL AND ELECTRICAL CHARACTERISTICS OF COMMUTER CARS TO INCLUDE SOME ELEMENTARY TROUBLESHOOTING AND CORRECTIVE MEASURES.
Original recommendation transmittal letter: PDF
Overall Status: Closed - Unacceptable Action
Mode: Railroad
Location: North Wales, PA, United States
Is Reiterated: No
Is Hazmat: No
Is NPRM: No
Accident #: DCA80AR045
Accident Reports: Rear End Collision of Septa Conrail Trains Nos. 406 and 472 on Conrail Track
Report #: RAR-80-11
Accident Date: 7/17/1980
Issue Date: 1/5/1981
Date Closed: 9/7/1982
Addressee(s) and Addressee Status: Conrail (Consolidated Rail Corporation) (Closed - Unacceptable Action)
Keyword(s): Training and Education

Safety Recommendation History
From: NTSB
To: Conrail (Consolidated Rail Corporation)
Date: 9/7/1982
Response: Recommendation R-80-52 asked Conrail to develop and implement a program for training and periodicall;y requalifying operating personnel on the mechanical and electrical characteristics of commuter cars to include some elementary troubleshooting and corrective measures. The Board recognizes that electrical troubleshooting procedures are included in various instruction classes and distributed to train service personnel. And we further recognize that special precautions must be taken when working to correct electrical failures, particularly on high voltage equipment. The intent of the recommendation, however, was for the crew to know what to look for in the way of operating breakers, switches, etc, in order to be better able to get a train going. Conrail’s stated position is clear, but does not completely satisfy the objective of R-80-52. Since no further action is proposed by Conrail, the Board has classified this recommendation as *‘Closed--Unacceptable Action.'

From: Conrail (Consolidated Rail Corporation)
To: NTSB
Date: 8/10/1981
Response: CONRAIL LTR: AS PREVIOUSLY ADVISED, CONRAIL DOES NOT CONDUCT INSTRUCTIONAL PROGRAMS FOR TRAIN SERVICE PERSONNEL, INCLUDING ELEMENTARY TROUBLE-SHOOTING. APPROPRIATE INSTRUCTION HAS BEEN INCLUDED IN THE BIENNIAL CLASSES WHICH PASSENGER SERVICE EMPLOYEES ARE REQUIRED TO ATTEND, COVERING AIR BRAKES, ETC., AND BRIEF WRITTEN INSTRUCTIONS IN A LAMINATED PLASTIC CARD, HAVE BEEN DISTRIBUTED TO ALL SUCH PERSONNEL. HOWEVER, THE COMPLEXITY OF THE SOLID-STATE CONTROL SYSTEMS ON MODERN M.U. CARS AND THE POTENTIAL HAZARDS INVOLVED IN PERMITTING EMPLOYEES TO WORK ON 11,000-VOLT EQUIPMENT IN THE FIELD, NATURALLY LIMIT THE SCOPE OF SUCH PROGRAMS.

From: NTSB
To: Conrail (Consolidated Rail Corporation)
Date: 7/7/1981
Response: Recommendation R-80-52 Concerns the need to develop and implement a program for training and periodically requalifying operating personnel on the mechanical and electrical characteiristics of commuter cars to include some elementary troubleshooting and corrective measures. We are pleased to learn that Conrail had conducted such programs in the past and intends to continue them. However, R-80-52 deals with what the Safety Board felt was an inadequate exposure to troubleshooting and recognizing” symptoms. We believe; the training shoud be more intensive and broader so that the onboard operating. personnel ,can satisfactorily correct malfunctions of some of the onboard systems and appliances. Recommendation R.-80-51 The Safety Board requests that you reconsider , and pending receipt of your response, it will be held in an Open-Unacceptable Action” status.

From: Conrail (Consolidated Rail Corporation)
To: NTSB
Date: 3/18/1981
Response: CONSOLIDATED RAIL CORPORATION LTR: IN THE PAST, CONRAIL HAS CONDUCTED SUCH PROGRAMS AND INTENDS TO CONTINUE THEM.