Train-stopping system misses mark in simulated tests on LIRR

Federally required crash prevention technology failed in some simulated tests done by the Long Island Rail Road, setting back its efforts to have the system called positive train control in place throughout the LIRR by the end of the year, MTA officials said.

The $1 billion system’s inability to do precisely what it’s supposed to — automatically bring to a halt a train that violates a stop signal — has raised new concerns about the program for MTA officials. They learned about the test failures during a Monday meeting of the agency’s railroad committee.

According to MTA documents, the LIRR system failed 16 out of 52 factory tests done in early March using a computerized simulation of the new technology, with the railroad’s Port Washington branch as a model.