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Safety Recommendation Details

Safety Recommendation R-87-069
Details
Synopsis: ON OCTOBER 9, 1986, EASTBOUND NATIONAL RAILROAD PASSENGER CORPORATION (AMTRAK) PASSENGER TRAIN 8 DERAILED IN FALL RIVER, WISCONSIN. EACH OF THE FREIGHT TRAINS PRECEDING TRAIN 8 RECEIVED INFORMATION THAT PREPARED THEM EITHER TO CROSS OVER FROM ONE TRACK TO ANOTHER AT FALL RIVER BECAUSE OF TRACK WORK IN THE AREA OR TO STOP AT FALL RIVER FOR IN STRUCTIONS. HOWEVER, THE ENGINEER OF TRAIN 8 DID NOT HAVE ANY ADVANCE NOTIFICATION OR TRAIN ORDER TO INDICATE THAT HIS TRAIN WAS TO CROSS OVER FROM THE EASTWARD TO THE WESTWARD TRACK IN FALL RIVER. AS A RESULT, TRAIN 8 ENTERED THE CROSSOVER AT 70 MPH AND THE LOCOMOTIVE UNITS OVERTURNED. THE AUTHORIZED SPEED FOR THE CROSSOVER WAS 10 MPH. TWO LOCOMOTIVE UNITS AND 10 PASSENGER CARS DERAILED; THE FIREMAN WAS KILLED, TWO CREWMEMBERS WERE INJURED SERIOUSLY, AND TWO RECEIVED MODERATE INJURIES. OF THE 215 PASSENGERS ON BOARD, 26 WERE INJURED.
Recommendation: THE NTSB RECOMMENDS THAT THE NATIONAL RAILROAD PASSENGER CORPORATION (AMTRAK): ESTABLISH A TESTING PROCEDURE AT EACH PERIODIC INSPECTION, NOT TO EXCEED 92 DAYS, AT AN ADEQUATE FACILITY FOR THE COMPLETE RADIO SYSTEM AND ANTENNA ON AMTRAK LOCOMOTIVES TO INCLUDE CONTINUITY AND REFLECT LEVELS.
Original recommendation transmittal letter: PDF
Overall Status: Closed - Acceptable Action
Mode: Railroad
Location: FALL RIVER, WI, United States
Is Reiterated: No
Is Hazmat: No
Is NPRM: No
Accident #: DCA87MR001
Accident Reports: Derailment of Amtrak Passenger Train 8 Operating on the Soo Line Railroad
Report #: RAR-87-05
Accident Date: 10/9/1986
Issue Date: 2/8/1988
Date Closed: 12/20/1988
Addressee(s) and Addressee Status: Amtrak (National Railroad Passenger Corporation) (Closed - Acceptable Action)
Keyword(s):

Safety Recommendation History
From: NTSB
To: Amtrak (National Railroad Passenger Corporation)
Date: 12/20/1988
Response: The Safety Board is pleased to note that Amtrak has incorporated radio system and antenna test procedures into its standard maintenance practices for all 45-day and 92-day locomotive inspections. This action is responsive to the intent of Safety Recommendation R-87-69 which has been placed in a "Closed--Acceptable Action" status.

From: Amtrak (National Railroad Passenger Corporation)
To: NTSB
Date: 10/5/1988
Response: AMTRAK HAS INCORPORATED THE COMPLETE RADIO SYSTEM AND ANTENNA TEST PROCEDURES IN ITS STANDARD MAINTENANCE PRACTICES (SMP #19401) FOR ALL 45-DAY AND 92-DAY LOCOMOTIVE INSPECTIONS. THE SMP WAS ISSUED AND FULLY IMPLEMENTED ON MAY 31, 1988. A COPY OF SMP #19401 AND AN INSPECTION WORKSHEET ARE ATTACHED.

From: NTSB
To: Amtrak (National Railroad Passenger Corporation)
Date: 7/25/1988
Response: The Board is oleased to note that Amtrak is setting up procedures and buying equipment to check the integrity and output of the radio antenna system on each Amtrak locomotive. We note further that these tests will be done at Amtrak's locomotive maintenance facilities on a 30 to 45-day cycle depending on the specific locomotive unit involved. Pending notification that the program has been fully implemented, Safety Recommendation R-87-69 will be held in an "Open--Acceptable Action" status.

From: Amtrak (National Railroad Passenger Corporation)
To: NTSB
Date: 6/8/1988
Response: AMTRAK IS SETTING UP PROCEDURES AND BUYING EQUIPMENT (OUTPUT WATTAGE METER) TO CHECK THE INTEGRITY AND OUTPUT OF THE RADIO/ANTENNA SYSTEM ON EACH AMTRAK LOCOMOTIVE. THESE TESTS WILL BE DONE AT OUR LOCOMOTIVE MAINTENANCE FACILITIES ON A 30- TO 45-DAY CYCLE DEPENDING ON THE SPECIFIC LOCOMOTIVE UNIT INVOLVED. THE RESULTS OF THE TESTS WILL BE RECORDED ON MAINTENANCE RECORD CARDS (MAP CARDS) KEPT AT THE FACILITY TO WHICH THE LOCOMOTIVE IS ASSIGNED. WE EXPECT TO START THE PROGRAM WITHIN 90 TO 120 DAYS, WITH FULL IMPLEMENTATION WITHIN 6 MONTHS. WE SUGGEST THIS RECOMMENDATION BE PLACED IN A "CLOSED--ACCEPTABLE ACTION" STATUS.

From: NTSB
To: Amtrak (National Railroad Passenger Corporation)
Date: 6/2/1988
Response: On February 8, 1988, the National Transportation Safety Board issued Safety Recommendations R-87-67 through -70 to the National Railroad Passenger Corporation (Amtrak) as a result of the Board's investigation of the derailment of Amtrak passenger train 8 operating on the Soo Line Railroad at Fall River, Wisconsin, on October 9, 1986. The National Transportation Saf$y Board is an independent Federal agency with the statutory responsibility . ..to promote transportation safety by conducting independent accident investigations and by formulating safety improvement recommendations" (Public Law 93-633). The Safety Board is vitally interested in any actions taken as a result of its safety recommendations. Our records show, however, that we have not received a response from Amtrak regarding the recommended actions. We would appreciate being informed as to what efforts are being made to implement these recommendations. The Safety Board's letter transmitting these recommendations is enclosed for your information. Thank you for your cooperation in this matter. We look forward to hearing from you in the near future.