amtrak

Loco Steve / Flickr

  Amtrak officials say a tentative agreement has been reached that would keep the passenger train running in Kansas and Missouri.

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The engineer who was driving the Amtrak train that derailed in Philadelphia Tuesday night killing at least seven people is a 2006 graduate of the University of Missouri. 

One key safety feature was missing from the stretch of track where an Amtrak passenger train going more than 100 mph derailed and killed seven people.

Investigators say that if positive train control had been installed on that stretch, the technology could have automatically slowed the train and perhaps saved lives.

NPR's David Schaper tells our Newscast unit that Amtrak and other railroads are behind schedule in rolling out the technology.

He filed this report:

The engineer of Amtrak Northeast Regional Train 188 that was traveling at 106 mph in a 50-mph zone in Philadelphia applied the full emergency braking system moments before the derailment that claimed seven lives and caused dozens of injuries, the National Transportation Safety Board said.

Instead of fighting like cats and dogs, Congress appears to be coming together for a change, and maybe it's because of our feline and canine friends.

In a rare bipartisan vote, the House Wednesday approved an Amtrak funding bill that will keep the trains running for another four years, and allow some pets to ride along on the intercity passenger rail service.

Flickr User Jack Snell

  Damage to railroad tracks caused by last week's flash flooding in west-central Missouri is forcing changes in Amtrak passenger service.

The Missouri Department of Transportation says that some passengers on Amtrak's Missouri River Runner between Kansas City and St. Louis will travel by bus instead of train this week.

Heavy rain last Thursday damaged a section of track east of Warrensburg. Union Pacific is doing repairs that require afternoon closings through Friday.

Marshall Griffin / St. Louis Public Radio

A new railroad bridge over the Osage River between St. Louis and Jefferson City is now open for both passenger and freight train use.

The new bridge cost $28 million, with most of the funds coming from the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.  Federal Railroad Administrator Joe Szabo says the project came in under budget and ahead of schedule.

train
ianmunroe / flickr

A new railroad bridge east of Missouri's capital city is opening with hopes of clearing the final major bottleneck for train traffic between St. Louis and Jefferson City.