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Based on the railroads’ Second-Quarter 2019 PTC Progress Reports, which were due to FRA by July 31, 2019, the 42 railroads subject to the statutory PTC mandate “are making steady progress,” FRA announced on Sept. 9. “As of June 30, 2019, PTC systems were in operation on approximately 50,300 (87%) of the nearly 58,000 route-miles required to be equipped by Congress. This reflects a 4% increase since first-quarter 2019. Nonetheless, railroads must still complete significant work to fully implement their PTC systems by Dec. 31, 2020, especially with respect to activating PTC systems on the remaining required main lines and achieving the necessary interoperability with their tenant railroads.”
Class I freight railroads reported that PTC systems are in operation on approximately 91% of their required main lines as of June 2019, a 4% increase since the first quarter. As a host railroad (owned trackage), Amtrak reports that approximately 899 of Amtrak’s 901 (99.8%) required route-miles (Northeast Corridor, Michigan and California) are governed by a PTC system. In addition, Amtrak informed FRA that its operations are currently governed by a PTC system on at least 16,032 of the 19,119 route-miles (84%) where Amtrak operates as a tenant railroad on other railroads’ PTC-equipped main lines.
Host commuter railroads reported that as of June 2019, they were operating their PTC systems in revenue service demonstration (RSD), a type of required advanced field testing, on approximately 698 route-miles and in revenue service on 443 route-miles, which, in total, is 37% of the host commuter railroads’ 3,111 required route-miles and a 12% increase since 1Q2019.
“All railroads have committed to fully implementing PTC systems on the required main lines by Dec. 31, 2020, if not earlier,” FRA noted. “Nonetheless, Administrator Batory and senior FRA officials continue to host meetings with dozens of individual railroads and groups of railroads, vendors, suppliers and subject matter experts to actively monitor developments and identify potential solutions where challenges arise.
“In addition, regular meetings are being held with the executive leadership of Amtrak and each commuter railroad that operates on or near Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor and/or the commuter railroad’s own PTC-mandated main lines in the Northeast.
This article first appeared on www.railwayage.com
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