Caltrain received $21 million federal grant to improve safety


The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) and Federal Transit Administration (FTA) today announced that Caltrain will receive a grant for $21.68 million to dual equip seven Caltrain trains with Positive Train Control (PTC) systems. The grant is intended to help commuter and intercity passenger railroads meet the December 31, 2018 deadline to implement PTC systems in order to improve safety.

This grant will be used to fund improvements to the Caltrain PTC system that will enable operations south of San Jose on Union Pacific dispatch territory.

“PTC is vitally necessary given how many people ride Caltrain every day,” said Caltrain General Manager & CEO Jim Hartnett. “This funding will ensure that our riders will continue to get to their destinations safely and securely.”

PTC systems are designed to prevent certain train-to-train collisions, over-speed derailments, incursions into established work zones, and trains routed to the wrong tracks because a switch was left in the wrong position. Caltrain’s PTC solution already in progress is a Communications-based Overlay Signal System (CBOSS). The grants under this program will be used to install PTC technology, including back office systems and wayside, communications, and onboard hardware equipment associated with railroads’ PTC systems.


About Caltrain: Owned and operated by the Peninsula Corridor Joint Powers Board, Caltrain provides commuter rail service from San Francisco to San Jose, with limited commute service to Gilroy. Caltrain enjoyed five years of consecutive monthly ridership increases, surpassing more than 60,000 average weekday riders. While the Joint Powers Board assumed operating responsibilities for the service in 1992, the railroad celebrated 150 years of continuous passenger service in 2014. Planning for the next 150 years of Peninsula rail service, Caltrain is on pace to electrify the system, reduce diesel emissions by 97 percent by 2040 and add more service to more stations.

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