Amtrak commits to paying derailment costs, speeding implementation of positive train control

December 20, 2017

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Gov. Jay Inslee issued a statement today following a conversation with Amtrak's president: 

"Earlier today, Transportation Secretary Roger Millar and I spoke with Richard Anderson, President and Co-CEO of Amtrak, regarding the tragic train derailment in DuPont. 

"The swift response to this tragedy has been the result of cooperation from all the involved jurisdictions. The priority has been on taking care of those on board the train and restoring access to I-5 as soon as safely possible. This response, however, does not come without financial costs. Mr. Anderson committed to me during our call that Amtrak will pay for the costs of the derailment including all the medical and incidental expenses incurred by those injured and their families, the clean-up and repair of the roadway, and the restoration of passenger rail service. This is a significant commitment and I appreciate that he has offered this support early and unequivocally.

"I also asked how Amtrak can work with its railroad partners to expedite the implementation of Positive Train Control (PTC). There are several entities responsible for fully implementing PTC in Washington state and Mr. Anderson committed that Amtrak would seek to make PTC operational statewide on its trains as soon as possible and before the December 31, 2018 federal deadline. 

"I want to be clear there are still many unanswered questions about how and why this incident occurred. I have confidence the NTSB’s investigation will provide those answers. Crews have made commendable progress on restoring I-5 and I ask that travelers continue to be patient as they complete opening of the lanes."

Media Contact 

Tara Lee
Governor Inslee’s Communications Office
360.902.4136