Montana Rail Link gets $3.5 million federal grant for PTC

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MISSOULA, Mont. – Montana Rail Link has obtained a $3.5 million grant from the federal government to install positive train control on 600 miles of main line across Montana and Idaho.

MRL spokesperson Ross Lane tells Trains News Wire that the Consolidated Rail Infrastructure and Safety Improvements grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation will help in the surveying and design work needed prior to PTC installation. Trains News Wire first reported in November 2018 of the railroad’s plans to install PTC. If successful it will be one of the first railroads to voluntarily install the crash prevention system.

“It will be a significant investment,” Lane says. “But we believe it’s the right thing to do for our employees and for the communities in which we operate.”

Lane says it’s unclear when the actual PTC installation will begin. In an interview with Trains last fall, MRL President Stacy Posey he hoped to have the work done by 2022.
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