NTSB Press Release
National Transportation Safety Board
Office of Public Affairs
PUPDATE: NTSB CONTINUES INVESTIGATION INTO WMATA ACCIDENT IN ROCKVILLE, MARYLAND
January 29, 2010
The National Transportation Safety Board provides the following update
on its investigation into the January 26th Washington Metropolitan Area
Transit Authority (WMATA) accident in Rockville, MD, involving a hi-
rail vehicle, in the work zone on the Red Line that struck and killed two
employees on the track.
- The two employees who died were working with a third employee
until the third employee's shift ended a few hours before the
- WMATA rules governing the safety of employees on the right-of-
way, de-energizing the 3rd rail power and establishing work zones
is being reviewed by investigators.
- Currently, twelve employees have been interviewed: the four
employees in the hi-rail vehicle at the time of the accident, three
Operations Control Center (OCC) employees, two automatic train
control employees, and three track employees. An additional three
employees are scheduled to be interviewed today. Interview
information received from OCC personnel will be reviewed and
correlated with radio and telephone recordings.
- All radio and telephone communication, associated with this
accident, is being compiled.
- NTSB's Highway Vehicle Group is inspecting the vehicle,
reviewing maintenance records and performance specifications
from the vehicle manufacturer, and also developing a speed
estimate of the accident vehicle.
- The sight distance test, which will include evaluating visibility, is
scheduled for next week.
- WMATA's training guidelines, related to the tasks being
performed at the time of the accident, has been requested.
NTSB Office of Public Affairs: (202) 314-6100
The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is an independent federal agency charged with determining the probable cause
of transportation accidents, promoting transportation safety, and assisting victims of transportation accidents and their families.