Train That Crashed In New Jersey Had No Functioning Data Recorder
The train that slammed into Hoboken Terminal on Thursday, killing one person and injuring more than 100, ran its fateful final route with no functioning data recorder in the locomotive, making it impossible for investigators to gather valuable information on why the train crashed, a federal official said Sunday.
It was one of several NJ Transit equipment failures onboard the train, as detailed Sunday by Bella Dinh-Zarr, vice chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board, which is leading the investigation. News of the broken data recorder comes after it was revealed that the Federal Railroad Administration fined NJ Transit in June for multiple safety violations, and that the administration is still monitoring NJ Transit’s performance.
“That’s quite an old event data recorder,” she said. “Usually when they’re not working, they’re replaced.”
Despite those equipment failures, the train may not have been speeding at the time of the accident. Thomas Gallagher, identified as the train’s engineer, told investigators that he was traveling 10 miles an hour as he entered the station, within normal limits. That may contradict some early news reports, which quoted passengers and eyewitnesses who said the train was moving quickly when it crashed.
Denied physical access to the scene, investigators tried other methods. They used a laser scanner to create three-dimensional images of the front two cars, she said, and used a drone to take pictures of the collapsed roof. Investigators interviewed crash victims in three different hospitals. They also reviewed video recordings from trains that were nearby at the time of the crash, but they “unfortunately obtained no pertinent information,” the vice chairman said.
The next step centers on getting inside the pinned train. Workers started removing debris from the crash site on Saturday afternoon, and that process will continue “24 hours a day” until it’s done, Dinh-Zarr said.Why don't the investigators use robot/drone imaging technology to examine the cars in such a precarious condition? The delay leaves evidence vulnerable to weather or any acts of God as well as tampering if terrorism was at play.
IT SEEMS TO ME THAT, IF THE ENGINEER IS SAYING HE WAS ONLY GOING 10MPH
WHEN ALL WITNESSES AGREE HE WAS GOING AT A HIGH RATE OF SPEED
AND THE TRAIN NEVER EVEN SLOWED DOWN AS IT CAME INTO THE STATION
THE ENGINEER CAN NOT BE PROPERLY SAID TO BE "COOPERATING WITH INVESTIGATORS".
IT SOUNDS TO ME AS IF THE MAN IS LYING.