Quigley praises bill to extend Positive Train Control installation deadline
U.S. Reps. Mike Quigley (D-Dist. 5) and Dan Newhouse (R-WA) released a statement on Thursday praising the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee's introduction of the Positive Train Control Enforcement and Implementation Act of 2015.
H.R. 3651 would extend the upcoming deadline for implementing Positive Train Control (PTC) safety technology beyond Dec. 31.
"We appreciate the Transportation Committee for taking the concerns of the more than 160 members we led to heart, and thank Chairman Bill Shuster (R-PA) and ranking member Peter DeFazio (D-OR) for moving quickly to extend this deadline,” the congressmen said. “While the current deadline to implement PTC is the end of this year, numerous passenger and freight-rail services have indicated that Americans could begin to see the effects of the disruption weeks prior to the deadline with railroads, shippers and agricultural suppliers stopping operations and closing facilities in early December or sooner due to the complex logistics. The grave economic risk this issue poses would have far-reaching consequences for American commuters, businesses and our economy. Congress should act quickly to pass this bill, which extends the PTC implementation deadline with a clear timeline that keeps railroads accountable, while allowing for the responsible employment of this critical safety technology."
The act extends the deadline to implement the technology to the end of 2018, provides limited authority for the U.S. Department of Transportation to extend the deadline beyond 2018 if railroads demonstrate they are facing continued difficulties in completing the mandate and have made every effort to install PTC as soon as possible, and requires railroads to complete progress reports on implementation.