New Jersey Transit meets federal deadline for rail braking safety system

New Jersey Transit has completed the implementation of a federally required emergency braking system two weeks before a national deadline.
Officials at the nation’s largest statewide transit system appeared at a Friday news conference with Gov. Phil Murphy and representatives of Amtrak and the Federal Railroad Administration.
“We’ll now measure safety, not by accident, but an even more important metric – every parent who gets home safely after a long day of work, every student who arrives at class to take finals exams, and every heroic front-line worker who arrives at his or her job to help those in need in these desperate moments,” Murphy said.
Officials had insisted over the last several months they would meet the deadline, even as the FRA released quarterly updates targeting NJ Transit as being in jeopardy of missing the cutoff.
The installation comes more than four years after an NJ Transit train crashed into Hoboken Terminal, killing one person and injuring more than 100 others. An investigation found that the engineer suffered from undiagnosed obstructive sleep apnea, leading to fatigue and exhaustion. This caused him to speed up while entering the station.
Federal authorities say that if the train had been equipped with the positive train control system, the tragedy may have been prevented.
NJ Transit could have faced fines of more than $25,000 per day, and potentially have been barred from running trains on tracks between New Jersey and New York City if it missed the deadline.
The Associated Press wire services contributed to this report.