Fly By Rail Inspection
Fort Worth, Texas
For more than 150 years the rail network has been a critical component of the U.S. transportation system and economy. Today it carries approximately one-third of U.S. exports and delivers five million tons of freight and approximately 85,000 passengers each day. The private freight rail industry owns the vast majority of the nation’s rail infrastructure, and continues to make significant capital investment — $27.1 billion in 2015 — to ensure the network’s good condition. U.S. rail still faces clear challenges, most notably in passenger rail, which faces the dual problems of aging infrastructure and insufficient funding.
The U.S. rail network is comprised of nearly 140,000 miles of track and over 100,000 bridges. The system can be divided into two categories: private freight railroads and intercity passenger rail, operated almost exclusively by Amtrak.
Through both public and private investment, funding for freight and passenger rail has been growing over the past five years. But despite this increase in funding, the amount needed to maintain, modernize, and expand capacity has not been met.
Rail accidents and derailments are down nearly 50% over the last decade. Railroads have been reconfiguring highway-rail crossings to separate the two and improve safety. While fewer people are being killed or sustaining injuries in highway-rail crossing incidents, 237 people were killed and 991 people were injured in 2015. To further improve safety and reduce accidents associated with operator error, like the 2015 Amtrak derailment in Philadelphia which cost eight lives, the federal government has required the installation of positive train control (PTC) by 2018. PTC is a signal technology designed to prevent collisions and ensure safe operating speeds and will be required for all lines carrying passengers.Public Safety & Resilience
America Scores a D+
The 2017 Infrastructure Report Card gives our nation a D+ across 16 infrastructure categories #InfrastructureMatters
Fix the Trust Fund
#FixTheTrustFund to put us on a road to better transportation! #InfrastructureMatters