Some of the people who died in the Washington, D.C. on Monday might have lived if the Metrorail system had followed the recommendation of the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) to get rid of older model subway cars three years ago. This startling fact that authorities knew and had been warned that there likely was not good enough “survivable space” in these kinds of train cars in crashes makes clear that the extent of some injuries might have been prevented if the Metrorail cars hadn’t crumpled so easily because they were outmoded and unsafe. The idea that the passenger compartments on the D.C. Metro cars would fail to protect people in the event of a rear-end collision such as occurred on June 22, 2009 could have been predicted and prevented. If you look at the photographs of how these cars in the D.C. Metro train collision crumpled up, peeled apart, and were completely demolished, you can see the obvious danger of these aging trains that needed better structural support. The riders and commuters from the D.C. area and Maryland who depended on the subway to get to work and to get around the city safely each day deserve better.
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