The Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee has approved the Obama administration's legislation that would allow the federal government to regulate safety on rail transit systems, including the Port Authority's Light Rail Transit lines.
The bill goes to the full Senate.
"Today's milestone is the first major step in untying the hands of the Federal Transit Administration and allowing us to implement national safety standards," said Federal Transit Administrator Peter Rogoff. "While transit is a safe way to travel, we still see too many preventable accidents, including fatal accidents.
William Millar, former Port Authority director who now heads the American Public Transportation Association, also applauded the vote.
The bill would authorize the Department of Transportation to establish federal safety standards for rail transit systems, reversing a prohibition that has been in effect since 1965.
Here is the Post-Gazette story from December, when the bill was introduced.