In a report blasting Metro for its safety record (PDF), the FTA recommended Metro take the actions listed below.
Seems like most of it is a fancier version of the same old bureaucratic mumbo jumbo Metro has been spewing. Remember "safety stand down" and the big safety shake up?
We've got one recommendation we think would go a lot further than all of these.
"Don't guess when it comes to safety because if you f*ck up, you're fired."
Yes, it's a pipe dream, but if Metro doesn't get to the root issues, we're not likely to see a world-class mass transit system anytime soon.
Anyway, here's what the FTA thinks will solve Metro's woes. The ones in bold actually seem like they might at least help. Or, maybe they should just show this video. (graphic)
- Conduct an assessment to identify the resources and expertise necessary for the Safety Department to carry out the activities specified in WMATA’s System Safety Program Plan and Safety Rules and Procedures Manual.
- Use the results of the assessment to ensure adequate staffing levels and expertise within the Safety Department.
- Increase the Safety Department’s access to operating and maintenance information and reports to ensure that this information is being analyzed for potential impacts on the safety of WMATA.
- Develop an internal process to require the communication of safety-related information across all WMATA departments, including the impacts of budget reductions and resource constraints on the performance of safety-related maintenance activities and requirements.
- Define and implement the process for the top Safety Department position to communicate safety priorities to the General Manager in a timely and consistent manner.
- Identify the technical skills required to perform system-wide hazard analysis (as required in 49 CFR Part 659 and TOC’s Program Standard). To the extent that WMATA Safety Department staff does not currently possess the needed skills, provide training as soon as practicable.
- Update the WMATA System Safety Program Plan (specifically Procedure #2.1/0 and Section 6) to develop a hazard management process that ensures that all WMATA departments participate in an on-going manner.
- Institute a process to ensure that changes in operating rules are analyzed for safety impacts before system-wide implementation. For example, WMATA engineering bulletins are “field tested” before full implementation.
- Finalize the right-of-way protection rules, develop training to implement the new rules and ensure all right-of-way employees and contractors receive this training before accessing the right-of-way.
- Implement the configuration management program described in the WMATA System Safety Program Plan.