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Federal Agency To Gain Safety Oversight For Metro

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WASHINGTON (AP) — Metro’s red line crash three years ago that killed nine people is leading to greater federal oversight of public transit systems.

The nation’s first federal safety standards for transit agencies are included in a transportation bill that is expected to be
approved Friday in Congress. The Federal Transit Administration would get oversight authority to set minimum standards for rail safety and training programs.

Maryland Sens. Barbara Mikulski and Ben Cardin championed the legislation sought by the Obama administration.

It was the June 22, 2009, Metro crash that focused Capitol Hill’s attention on transit safety. The new oversight will apply to all public transportation systems. Subways are the only transportation systems that currently aren’t subject to federal safety standards.

Metro General Manager Richard Sarles says the transit agency welcomes the oversight.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

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