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Safety Recommendation Details

Safety Recommendation R-85-058
Details
Synopsis: ABOUT 5:27 P.M. ON MARCH 17, 1984, A 10-CAR SUBWAY TRAIN OPERATED BY THE NEW YORK CITY TRANSIT AUTHORITY (NYCTA) DERAILED IN THE JORALEMON STREET TUNNEL UNDER THE EAST RIVER ABOUT 1,900 FEET SOUTH OF THE BOWLING GREEN STATION IN NEW YORK, NEW YORK. THE TRAIN, WHICH WAS LOADED TO VIRTUAL CAPACITY WITH ABOUT 1,500 PASSENGERS, WAS EXCEEDING THE 10-MPH SPEED RESTRICTION ESTABLISHED BECAUSE THE TRACK SECTION WAS UNDER REPAIR. THE DERAILMENT DID NOT RESULT IN SERIOUS INJURIES TO THE PASSENGERS OR SIGNIFICANT DAMAGE TO THE EQUIPMENT. AFTER EXTENSIVE DELAY, THE PASSENGERS DETRAINED AND WALKED ABOUT 700 FEET TO AN EMERGENCY EXIT, WHERE THEY CLIMBED A STAIRCASE FROM THE TUNNEL TO THE STREET. A SECOND TRAIN STALLED IN THE TUNNEL JUST SOUTH OF THE BOWLING GREEN STATION WHEN THE DERAILMENT INTERRUPTED TRACTION POWER TO THE TRAIN. PASSENGERS FROM THIS TRAIN WERE EVACUATED ONTO THE STATION PLATFORM THROUGH ANOTHER TRAIN WHICH WAS POSITIONED FOR THIS PURPOSE.
Recommendation: THE NTSB RECOMMENDS THAT THE NEW YORK CITY TRANSIT AUTHORITY: EDUCATE CONTRACT INSPECTORS, TRACKWALKERS, TRAIN OPERATORS, AND SUPERVISORS IN THE APPLICABLE CRAFTS IN THEIR RESPONSIBILITIES FOR REPORTING DISCREPANCIES IN TRACK CONDITIONS, INCLUDING LIGHTED AND UNLIGHTED SIGNALS AND SIGNS, AND ESTABLISH APPROPRIATE MEASURES TO PROMOTE COMPLIANCE.
Original recommendation transmittal letter: PDF
Overall Status: Closed - Acceptable Action
Mode: Railroad
Location: New York City, NY, United States
Is Reiterated: No
Is Hazmat: No
Is NPRM: No
Accident #: DCA84RM007
Accident Reports: Derailment of New York City Transit Authority Subway Train in the Joralemon Street Tunnel
Report #: RAR-85-07
Accident Date: 3/17/1984
Issue Date: 5/20/1985
Date Closed: 12/18/1990
Addressee(s) and Addressee Status: Metropolitan Transportation Authority New York City Transit (Closed - Acceptable Action)
Keyword(s): Transit, Training and Education

Safety Recommendation History
From: NTSB
To: Metropolitan Transportation Authority New York City Transit
Date: 12/18/1990
Response: Safety Recommendation R-85-58 asked the NYCTA to educate contract inspectors, trackwalkers, train operators, and supervisors in the applicable crafts in their responsibilities for reporting discrepancies in track conditions, including lighted and unlighted signals and signs, and establish appropriate measures to promote compliance. The Safety Board is pleased to learn that engineering and construction employees, including contract employees, are being trained and receive periodic requalification training. Based on this information, Safety Recommendation R-85-58 has been classified as "Closed-Acceptable Action."

From: Metropolitan Transportation Authority New York City Transit
To: NTSB
Date: 9/12/1990
Response: THE TRACK AND STRUCTURES DEPARTMENT HAS IMPLEMENTED ADDI TIONAL TRAINING FOR ITS ENGINEERING AND CONSTRUCTION EMPLOYEES INCLUDING CONTRACT INSPECTORS. REQUALIFICATION TRAINING OF TRACKWALKERS IN TRACK INSPECTING IS ALSO BEING PERFORMED AS INDICATED BELOW: (A CHRONOLOGY OF TRAINING COMPLETED FOLLOWED).

From: NTSB
To: Metropolitan Transportation Authority New York City Transit
Date: 4/12/1990
Response:

From: Metropolitan Transportation Authority New York City Transit
To: NTSB
Date: 10/3/1988
Response: A TRACK MAINTENANCE SUPERVISOR MW-1 SEMINAR, HAS RECENTLY BEEN READIED FOR IMPLEMENTATION. THIS THREE DAY COURSE WILL BE ATTENDED BY LEVEL I AND II TRACK MAINTENANCE SUPERVISORS OF THE TRACK AND STRUCTURES DEPARTMENT. THIS SEMINAR MAY ALSO BE ATTENDED BY REPRESENTATIVES OF OTHER DEPARTMENTS UPON REQUEST. THIS COURSE'S OBJECTIVES ARE TO: 1. INTRODUCE NEW TECHNOLOGIES AND WORK PRATICES FOR USE THROUGHOUT THE AUTHORITY. 2. DISCUSS MINIMUM TRACK MAINTENANCE STANDARDS REQUIRED FOR THE SAFE OPERATION OF HEAVY RAIL RAPID TRANSIT TRAINS.

From: NTSB
To: Metropolitan Transportation Authority New York City Transit
Date: 7/25/1988
Response: In its letter of November 19, 1985, a copy of which is enclosed, the Board noted that the NYCTA was reviewing its current procedure regarding the requirements for restricted speed signs and signals and, based on this review, would be issuing a revised procedure which outlines clearly the requirements for restricted speed signs and signals and the responsibilities of the appropriate departments for ensuring that these requirements are met. We noted further NYCTA's indication that it would provide additional education and training as required when it completed its review and issued a revised procedure. On January 28, 1986, the NYCTA informed the Safety Board that it expected to have the new procedure completed by March 1986 and that the Board would be provided a copy at that time. Our records indicate, however, that no further correspondence has been received, and the Board is, therefore, requesting an update on this issue.

From: Metropolitan Transportation Authority New York City Transit
To: NTSB
Date: 1/28/1986
Response: We expect to have the new procedure completed by March 1986, and we will provide you with a copy of it at that time. In the interim, procedures have been established whereby the Electrical Department is responsible for posting the required slow speed lights and signs and the Track and Structures Department monitors the locations where such restrictions exist. While we recognize this to be a temporary solution, it does provide for an acceptable level of safety until a formal procedure is established.

From: NTSB
To: Metropolitan Transportation Authority New York City Transit
Date: 11/19/1985
Response: The Safety Board notes that the NYCTA is reviewing its current procedure regarding the requirements for restricted speed signs and signals and, based on this review, will be issuing a revised procedure which outlines clearly the requirements for restricted speed signs and signals and the responsibilities of the appropriate departments for ensuring that these requirements are met. The Board notes further that in addition to the instruction that is currently being given in response to Safety Recommendation R-84-19, NYCTA will provide additional education and training as required when it has completed its review and issued a revised procedure for slow speed restrictions. The Board considers the NYCTA's efforts positive steps toward fulfilling the intent of Safety Recommendations R-85-57 and -58 which have been placed in an "Open-Acceptable Action" status. The Board urges the NYCTA to expedite its efforts in this area and would appreciate receiving a copy of the revised procedure when it is issued and an update on the training to be given in connection with the revised procedure.

From: Metropolitan Transportation Authority New York City Transit
To: NTSB
Date: 9/6/1985
Response: IN OUR PREVIOUS CORRESPONDENCE REGARDING SAFETY RECOMMENDATION R-84-19 THE NYCTA PROVIDED THE NTSB WITH INFORMATION CONCERNING THE TRAINING COURSES THAT HAVE BEEN DEVELOPED FOR THE PURPOSE OF UPGRADING THE LEVEL OF EXPERTISE FOR CONTRACTOR AND TRACK INSPECTORS. THESE COURSES INCLUDE INSTRUCTION AS TO THE PROPER DISPLAY OF SLOW SPEED FLAGS AND CAUTION LIGHTS FOR ALL TRACK REQUIRING RESTRICTED SPEED OPERATION. UPON COMPLETION OF OUR REVIEW OF THE PROCEDURE FOR SLOW SPEED RESTRICTIONS AS DISCUSSED ABOVE WE WILL PROVIDE FURTHER EDUCATION AND TRAINING AS REQUIRED.