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>> One year after a deadly Amtrak derailment that killed eight passengers in Philadelphia, officials concluding that the driver was to blame. The National Transportation Safety Board saying Tuesday that the engineer of Amtrak 188, Brandon Bostian, was distracted by radio traffic as he sped up into a curve at more than twice the recommended speed, causing the train to fly off the tracks.
>> He went, in a matter of seconds, from distraction to disaster.>> Investigators Tuesday said that as the train headed North, Bostian was listening to radio traffic about a nearby commuter train that had been hit by a thrown rock. As he listened six minutes of calls between the train and the rail dispatcher, he sped up to 106 miles per hour on a stretch where the speed limit was 50 miles per hour.
Such a mistake could have been prevented, officials say, had the route been equipped with positive train control, which is a safety net system designed to prevent such dangerous acceleration. Since the accident the NTSB has installed positive train control on most of the northeast corridor between Washington and Boston.
Previous theories that Bostian had been talking or texting on his cell phone were ruled out, as was the possibility that he was under the influence of drugs or alcohol.