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With nine people dead and 76 sent to area hospitals -- some of whom are critically injured -- the accident site remained a rescue scene Tuesday, with a crane and cadaver dogs brought in to find people who were possibly still trapped on the trains.
Today investigators said the two trains that collided were likely being run by computers that control speed and braking. Officials said Metro trains travel above sensors along the rail that can automatically detect when trains are getting too close to one another. The computerized systems stops them from coming within 1,200 feet of each other, and investigators need to find out why it didn't work.
"What causes us concern the most is the fact that this was not supposed to happen," said Jackie Jeter, president of Amalgamated Transit Union Local 689 today. "There are safety mechanisms that are on place on the trains to prevent this type of accident. And, for me, as president of the union and as a train operator, I have to wonder why didn't those safety mechanisms kick in and prevent it."
It's still not clear whether the crash was the result of an operator error, a train malfunction, or a problem in the computer system.
Originally posted by visible_villain
off-topic post removed to prevent thread-drift
Originally posted by CINY8
Here is an interesting blog that I found in regards to Wherley's role on 9/11. See number 5 in particular.
DC National Guard
Manager(s): Major General David F. Wherley, Jr.
Supervisor(s): Major General David F. Wherley, Jr
Friday, November 5, 2004
NEWARK -- In a letter today to Major General David F. Wherley, Jr., the Commanding General of the District of Columbia National Guard, Senator Frank R. Lautenberg (D-NJ) requested immediate suspension of all activities by the DC Air National Guard in New Jersey until an investigation of the Wednesday night incident is completed. Lautenberg also asked the General for a meeting to discuss the circumstances surrounding the F-16 attack on Little Egg Harbor Intermediate School.
In the letter to General Wherley, Lautenberg stated: "The actions of the pilot -- whether accidental or not -- are totally incomprehensible, and I therefore ask that the District of Columbia Air National Guard suspend all training operations in the state of New Jersey until this matter has been fully investigated."
While practice missions at the Warren Grove Gunnery Range have been temporarily suspended, it is unclear if the DC Air National Guard -- whose primary mission is to patrol Washington, DC -- will continue to train in and around New Jersey.
Lautenberg also wrote the General: "I ask that your prompt review produce a complete explanation of the circumstances, including a remedy that will absolutely guarantee that nothing like this can ever happen again."
Wherley then talked to another Secret Service agent, Becky Editor. Speaking for the Vice President, she asked General Wherley to put aircraft over DC with orders to intercept any aircraft that approached within any 20 miles of the city and turn that aircraft around. If the aircraft
would not change course, the interceptor should use "any force necessary" to keep that aircraft from crashing into a building. Wherley asked if there was anybody in a uniform around there he could talk to. Editor alluded to a Navy captain who was busy on other matters, but said no one was available. Wherley felt the instructions were not in military terms, but were understandable enough.
Originally posted by esdad71
Does everyone who die have to be a conspiracy?
Originally posted by weedwhacker
reply to post by star in a jar
OH! And, this is a biggie, D) Know where the General, and his wife, were sitting --- in a SIX CAR train!!!
Two FBI agents are at the scene, News4's Jackie Bensen reported. The FBI agents are at the scene to provide mutual aid and support, like evidence recovery or technical equipment, according to a spokesperson from the Washington field office. Nothing indicates criminal activity.
Federal authorities had no indication of any terrorism connection, Homeland Security Department spokeswoman Amy Kudwa said less than two hours after the crash.
"I don't know the reason for this accident," Catoe said. "I would still say the system is safe, but we've had an incident."
The National Transportation Safety Board took charge of the investigation and sent a team to the site of the accident. D.C. police and the FBI also had investigators at the scene to help search the wreckage for any overlooked injured or dead passengers and evidence.
Guard plans summer exercises
Vigilant Guard 09 is a seven-day, multi-state, multi-site simulation, which includes a series of training exercises designed to enhance operational relationships witin FEMA Region VII.
Exercise elements will include a train derailment, response to a foreign animal disease, and support to state agencies due to a manmade, biological release. The purpose of the training event is to identify gaps which may exist between civilian, governmental and military response organizations from participating states. Vigilant Guard 09 is a component of Ardent Sentry 2009 (AS09), a national-level emergency response exercise.
Originally posted by RenDMC
Can you imagine the public inquest into 9/11 now?
"So Mr Conspiracy man, who would you like to bring to the stand?"
" The General who was responsible for scrambling jets on 9/11"
"Ohhhhh you want the dead guy to speak? Awww that isn't possible, now please just accept what we tell you"
But to be honest, this could just be down to coincidence. It's more than likely the poor SOB was in the wrong place at the wrong time. As were the other passengers.
Perhaps they had a covert team there placing the bodies to appear like two important senior citizens were actually riding the Metro during rush hour. Maybe FEMA was helping out also.