After crash, railroad wants 2 in cabs at some stations

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New Jersey Transit implemented a new rule Thursday for pulling into two of its stations a week after one of its commuter trains crashed into a terminal. (WPVI)

New Jersey Transit implemented a new rule Thursday for pulling into two of its stations a week after one of its commuter trains crashed into a terminal, killing a woman on the platform and injuring more than 100 others.

The conductor must join the engineer whenever a train pulls into Hoboken Terminal or its Atlantic City station, NJ Transit spokeswoman Jennifer Nelson said.


That means a second set of eyes will be watching as a train enters the final phase of its trip at stations where there are platforms at the end of the rails.

The New York Times first reported the policy.

The engineer was alone when the train crashed into the Hoboken station last Thursday. He has told federal investigators the train was entering the station at 10 mph, but he had no memory of the crash.

National Transportation Safety Board investigators recovered the data recorder, a video recorder and the engineer's cellphone from the front car of the NJ Transit train on Tuesday afternoon. The equipment was sent to an agency lab in Washington for analysis, officials said.

Investigators said it may be a few days before they release the information.

A second event recorder that was retrieved from the locomotive in the rear of the train wasn't functioning on the day of the crash, officials said.

Some rail-safety experts caution that having a second person in a cab isn't automatically safer, since crew members can sometimes distract each other. In 1996 outside Washington, D.C., a commuter train engineer was thought to have been distracted by a conversation with a crew member, causing a crash with an Amtrak train that killed 11 people.
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