There are many factors that Metrolink accident lawyers would blame for the declining standards of safety recently on Southern California’s commuter system. These include lack of oversight, regulatory apathy, and poor employee training. It seems like we can also add sabotage to that list. According to Metrolink, one of its engineers was found tampering with the surveillance cameras that were recently installed in response to the deadly Chatsworth train accident in 2008.
According to the Los Angeles Times, the engineer who works for an operating contractor was found trying to block the cameras at least three times. The engineer has now been barred from working on any Metrolink train. This was not the first time that engineers and conductors have been found trying to sabotage – which is what this really is – video surveillance systems. In March, another engineer was found trying to use a piece of paper to block the camera. Investigations into that incident are still ongoing.
Any Los Angeles personal injury attorney would be shocked to learn that this particular engineer is still running Metrolink trains. We’re almost afraid to ask why this engineer is still being allowed to run the trains. It shouldn’t take an investigation to know when a crew member simply does not believe in high adherence to safety standards. It was an engineer texting at the controls of the train that resulted in the deadly crash which killed 25 people and injured more than 130 others. It was the deadliest train accident in Southern California in recent history, and soon after, Metrolink installed the surveillance cameras.
The unions have been opposed to the surveillance cameras from the very beginning. In fact, the union currently has a lawsuit pending against the use of the surveillance cameras. Earlier this year, the union also created a ruckus over the use of psychological assessment testing to screen potential candidates for important operator positions at Metrolink.