Following the December 2013 fatal Metro-North derailment, there has been a lot of talk in regards to the safety of the railroad and the changes that need to be made. However, despite the comments about the safety lapses that led to not one but five accidents, commuters still feel safe and remain calm. “I’ve been taking the train all these years and I’ve never had a problem,” said one commuter to the Poughkeepsie Journal.
The railroad continues to perform regular maintenance to ensure the safety of the passengers. Workers continue to catch up on maintenance and follow procedures meant to prevent derailments and employee deaths on the tracks.
Even when the Poughkeepsie Journal traveled to the Yonkers station, about four miles north of the curve where the speeding train toppled in a fatal derailment last year, passengers gathered as they always have been, waiting for the train to pull into the station and bring them to their destination. “A few times coming into a curve, you think, ‘Are they going too fast?’” said Charles Holodak, 50, who works for an insurance fund. “But I feel safe.”
The Bronx derailment in December 2013 that killed four and injured dozens occurred when engineer William Rockefeller dozed off at the controls. Rockefeller suffered from an undiagnosed case of sleep apnea.
Metro-North plans to begin screening train engineers for sleep apnea in the coming months. NJ Transit, which runs the Pascack Valley and Port Jervis lines for Metro-North, already does the screening.
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