By Mike DeSantisThe railroads are known for their great safety record.
But a report from the U.S. Transportation Department this week found that just one of the railroads in the nation has been rated “deficient” in safety by the National Transportation Safety Board since the end of 2010.
That’s a low bar, and it could cost a company millions of dollars in additional fines and fines to improve.
That’s not a good situation for companies like Transcontinental, a company that manufactures nickel boards for railroad retirement boards.
It’s one of four companies cited for having “significant deficiencies” in the safety of their nickel boards.
“We are proud of our safety record, and we continue to work to improve,” said Transcontinental president and CEO Paul H. Dolan in a statement to The Wall Street Journal.
“Transcontinental will continue to take actions to improve its safety record.”
The other companies were: American West, Allegheny Pacific, Central Pacific, and Eastern Railroad.
The report found that “the number of nickel board-related fatalities for each of the four railroads increased from 11 in 2010 to 35 in 2012,” according to the Associated Press.
The rail companies cited were: Pacific Northwest, Eastern, Allegiant, and Allegheny.
The average annual number of fatalities is around 7.
The National Transportation Board, which has oversight of the safety industry, said in a press release that it would “evaluate and report to Congress” on whether “safety improvements” are needed in the industry.
But the agency has not made any recommendations for improving safety.
“The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and its Member Agencies are committed to ensuring that safety improvements are made to ensure that the safety, health and welfare of all railroads, employees, and passengers are not compromised,” the release read.
“We look forward to reviewing the report and report with our Member Agents and stakeholders in the coming months.”
The National Railroad Retirement Board (NRRB) is the only federal safety agency that is responsible for monitoring safety issues in the rail industry.
The agency was created in 1976 and was given $6.6 billion to hire and train railroad workers to work in hazardous jobs in the 1950s and 1960s.
The NRRB has oversight over railroads that have been in business since before the Second World War.
Its report noted that since the 1950, the number of rail accidents has dropped from nearly 2,000 to 2,200.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.