Positive Train Control

Capital Metro is implementing a federally mandated positive train control system to ensure the long-term safety of MetroRail service.

What is PTC?

Positive train control (PTC) systems monitor and control train movements with the goal of protecting trains and passengers.

These systems employ technology to help regulate rail traffic and can deliver constant data about a train's location in relation to track conditions and other vehicles. Equipment installed on the train determines where and how fast it can travel and ensures its safe movement. PTC improves the overall safety of railway traffic by enforcing travel speeds, maintaining temporary speed restrictions, helping to avoid collisions and protecting rail workers.

The original federal mandate imposed a deadline of 2018 to complete the project. Capital Metro was among a number of rail operators that qualified for an extension of that deadline and now has another 2 years to finish up work.

Effect on Customers

PTC-related construction and installation projects will continue through 2020. MetroRail service disruptions can be expected, on occasion, for the remainder of the project. We'll alert customers in advance of these and other service disruptions and provide alternate service when necessary.

The Federal Railroad Administration requires train engineers to blow a horn in construction work zones when workers are present, regardless of whether the area is normally deemed a “quiet zone.” Capital Metro currently has ongoing construction projects along the Red Line corridor with work moving to different locations along the track daily or weekly.