Amtrak to Install Video Cameras to Monitor Train Operators

Amtrak plans to equip 70 ACS-64 locomotives with inward-facing cameras by the end of the year.

WASHINGTON – Amtrak will install inward-facing cameras to monitor train operators on 70 of its locomotives by the end of the year.

Only ACS-64 trains that power all Northeast regional and long-distance trains between Washington and Boston, as well as Keystone Service between New York, Philadelphia and Harrisburg, Pa., will receive the new devices, reports.

The decision comes weeks after an Amtrak train derailed on May 12 in Philadelphia, which resulted in the deaths of eight people.

Officials said the Northeast Regional 188 train involved in the accident had only a forward-facing camera that monitored the tracks ahead of the train as it took a curve at more than double the 50 mph speed limit.

RELATED: Surveillance Video Shows Amtrak Trains Derailment

“Inward-facing video cameras will help improve safety and serve as a valuable investigative tool,” Amtrak President and CEO Joe Boardman said in a statement. “We have tested these cameras and will begin installation as an additional measure to enhance safety.”

Plans to install video cameras on Acela Express locomotives and other diesel trains are still in development, according to Amtrak officials.

Although the freight railroad industry has already begun installing inward-facing video cameras, fewer than 2 percent of freight locomotives, roughly 375 trains, were equipped with the technology at the end of 2014, reports.

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