Villaraigosa tours Metrolink test train featuring sophisticated brake technology

Corey Moore/KPCC

Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa today joined Metrolink officials for a preview of ‘Positive Train Control,' a system that will cause trains to automatically brake.

Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa joined Metrolink officials on Monday for a preview of ‘Positive Train Control,' a new braking system designed to automatically stop or slow a train before a collision.

Villaraigosa emphasized the technology as groundbreaking.

“As we go, so will go the nation," Villaraigosa said. "And this Positive Train Control when it’s finally implemented, it’ll make us safer, more efficient, more cost effective and, importantly, it will protect lives.”

Villaraigosa toured a test train featuring on-board equipment and observation stations.

Proponents say the system will prevent deadly collisions, such as the one that happened four years ago this week in Chatsworth. The collision between a Metrolink and a freight train killed 25 people and injured dozens.

Metrolink expects to complete the $200 million project by the middle of next year, ahead of a federal mandate.

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