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Wednesday, July 09, 2014

Talking Transportation: Is is Safe to Ride Metro-North?

By Jim Cameron

Special to WestportNow

It has been seven months since a drowsy engineer drove a speeding Metro-North train off the tracks at Spuyten Duyvil, killing four and injuring 59. Months earlier a derailment and collision near Bridgeport sent 70 to the hospital.

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Ever since, the railroad has promised that improving safety is its top priority. So does that mean the railroad is now “safe?”

Aside from taking the word of management, how are we to know? Just because we haven’t had another accident doesn’t mean the railroad is safe. Nobody suspected it was unsafe until those two accidents last year showed us just how dangerous our daily commute had become.

In April this year The Commuter Action Group surveyed 642 commuters and asked them “Do you feel safe riding Metro-North?” and 56 percent said yes, 15 percent said no and 29 percent said they “weren’t sure.”

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