Everything You Need to Know About The FTA’s Public Transportation Safety Program

Subway station at Grand Central Station, New York City, USA.

Early this year, The Federal Transit Administration issued a new framework for mitigating safety risks within public transit as part of the Public Transportation Safety Program. We’ve outlined everything you will need to know about the FTA’s proposed rule:

The Public Transportation Safety Program consists of several key elements:

  1. The National Public Transportation Safety Plan
  2. The Public Transportation Agency Safety Plans
  3. The Public Transportation Safety Certification Training Program
  4. The State Safety Oversight Program

The proposed program will require operators of federally funded public transportation systems to develop and implement safety plans in an effort to strengthen the safety of public transportation systems and satisfy requirements outlined in the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP-21) Act as well as the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act.

The FTA hopes this program will help address some of the growing concerns over safety vulnerabilities present for the public transportation industry given the complexity of service, aging transit infrastructure, facilities and equipment, as well as the high rate of turnover in the workforce and lack of consistent safety procedures and training.

Minimum Requirements

At a minimum any state, local governmental authority, or other operator of a public transportation system receiving federal funding has one year after the final rule has been published to implement a comprehensive Public Transportation Agency Safety Plan.

Each safety plan must use a Safety Management System (SMS) framework consisting of four main pillars:

  1. Safety Management Policy
  2. Safety Risk Management
  3. Safety Assurance
  4. Safety Promotion

Transit agencies are also required to include performance targets based on the criteria outlined in the National Public Transportation Safety Plan and the National Transit Asset Management System, as well as a process and timeline for conducting annual reviews to ensure these performance targets are met.

Performance targets at a minimum should track and manage for:

  • Fatalities
  • Injuries
  • Safety Events
  • System Reliability (State of Good Repair Standard)

The Public Transportation Safety Program is a big step forward for the public transportation industry and will help set a standard of safety for the transit industry at large.

Join us for the next post in our series as we take an in depth look at the safety management system framework outlined in the FTA’s Public Transportation Safety Program.

3 thoughts on “Everything You Need to Know About The FTA’s Public Transportation Safety Program

  1. Pingback: Intelex Blog - Environmental, Health, and Safety Management - A Global Leader in Business, Environmental, Health & Safety, and Quality Management Systems

  2. Every day, millions of passengers take some form of public transportation to get to or from work, shopping, classes, or other destinations. While the safety performance of the public transportation industry remains strong.

  3. Pingback: How Transit Agencies Can Implement the FTA’s Safety Management System - Intelex Blog - Environmental, Health, and Safety Management

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