So today I went to Congress to propose legislation reforming DOT safety oversight of America's rail transit systems.
Traveling by rail transit in the United States remains extraordinarily safe. Yet serious accidents do occur, such as this summer’s tragic Washington Metro crash and other recent accidents in Boston and San Francisco.
And, as transit use increases in this nation, passengers need additional action to make rail transit even safer.
Look, we have safety regulations in place for planes, trains, trucks, and automobiles. Yet rail transit riders enjoy none of the stringent standards that protect passengers on airlines and railroads.
And, even though rail transit systems carry far more passengers daily than either airplanes or railroads, DOT is actually prohibited from issuing safety standards and regulations for these systems.
This doesn't make any sense; the nation's rail transit passengers deserve to see it fixed; and this DOT wants to help fix it.
I am pleased to be able to look back on this year and see a host of DOT efforts that show safety really is our number one priority. If you've been reading this blog, then you already know about these initiatives.
Rail transit protection is a critical piece in the safety puzzle. I urge Congress to consider it.