The nation's chief railroad regulator is using technology to make rail crossings safer as she prepares to leave office. Sarah Feinberg says technology companies are beginning to add crossing warnings to their GPS devices and mapping applications.
Feinberg has spent her two years in office pressing the railroad industry to hasten the installation of automatic speed controls and recently urged railroads to test engineers for sleep apnea.
Her tenure ends Friday.
She had been on the job for just three weeks when a Metro North train slammed into an SUV stopped on tracks in Valhalla, killing six people. The train was headed from Grand Central Terminal to the Brewster area. One of the passengers killed in the crash was 41-year old Aditya Tomar, of Danbury.
It was not the first deadly crash at the site: A truck driver died after a Metro-North train struck the vehicle at the same Commerce Street crossing in 1984, according to Federal Railroad Administration records. The driver didn't stop before the collision.
The February 2015 crash highlighted a problem that has plagued the railroad industry since the invention of the automobile: the potential for danger wherever tracks and roads meet.