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NY Congressman Wants Safety Improved At Rail Crossings

Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney
Courtesy of the Office of Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney

A Hudson Valley congressman Wednesday introduced legislation to improve safety at rail crossings, the day following a fatal Metro-North crash in Westchester County.

Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney introduced the Rail Crossings Safety Improvement Act after the fatal collision between a Metro-North commuter train and an SUV that was stopped on the tracks at a rail crossing in Valhalla. Maloney says his legislation would reauthorize the Rail Line Relocation & Improvement Capital Grant Program at $100 million a year for the next four years. He says state and local governments would be eligible for grants through a federal match program.

“I believe the match is about 90-10 [percent] for local communities, so it’s a very healthy federal match,” says Maloney. “And it would allow communities with unsafe rail crossings to make improvements.”

Over the past year, Maloney has been calling for the installation of positive train control systems on commuter rails. He says the Wi-Fi and GPS-based safety technology would allow for the detection of grade crossing malfunctions or objects on the tracks.

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