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The National Transportation Safety Board Leads Metrorail Derailment Investigation

October 20, 2021

ARLINGTON, VIRGINIA - A news article on reports that the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is taking the lead role in the D.C. Metrorail Blue Line train derailment investigation.  The NTSB decided to investigate the train derailment because the agency believes it can "advance a known safety issue," based on its investigation of previous Metrorail derailments.

The derailment, which occurred near the Arlington Cemetery station, resulted in the evacuation of approximately 187 passengers and a temporary suspension of Blue Line operations in the area. The train’s operator reported a sticking break before the accident, according to the news story. The incident is the first derailment of a Metrorail carrying passengers since last year.  

According to the news report, the Washington Metrorail Safety Commission alleged that evidence was tampered with during an investigation of a similar derailment in 2020. The Commission has since asked Metro to improve employee training to ensure workers understand their duties. In an internal memo about this most recent derailment, Metro General Manager Paul J. Wiedefeld wrote to employees, “[e]very employee who is asked for information is expected to fully cooperate with the NTSB and be governed by their process,” according to a Washington Post report.

According to the Safety Commission, "evidence of D.C. Metro train separation was tampered with." [News Wire, October 21, 2020]. 

The NTSB will work in conjunction with the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority and the Metrorail Safety Commission during the investigation. 

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Category: Personal Injury

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