Cause of the DC Metro Crash may be due to Faulty Signal System
The entity that runs the Metro, the Metropolitan Washington Transit Agency (MWATA), was told by the NTSB in 2006 to do something about the older cars in the Metro system since they were built as far back as 1974, or replace them with new trains. This of course was never completed by the MWATA principally due to financial constraints. This released information has caused some controversy in the D.C. area.
The NTSB may have found evidence that the age of the cars may not have been a factor in this train crash, and rather, the electronic system that keeps trains apart during rush hour may have been the defective condition that may be linked to the crash. The Washington Post reported on July 7, 2009, that the system may not have been functioning normally, and this defective condition was never caught because it was not an “on-going problem.”
Union leader, Jackie Jeter, of the ATS local 689, whose union membership run the Metro Trains demanded that there be more autonomy for workers over the trains under these facts. Hopefully this will lead to much needed oversight to operate the D.C. Metro to prevent another train crash from occurring.