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California Public Utilities Commission
505 Van Ness Ave., San Francisco
PRESS RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Media Contact: Terrie Prosper, 415.703.1366, firstname.lastname@example.org Docket #: SX-88
CPUC PROHIBITS PERSONAL USE OF
CELLULAR DEVICES BY TRAIN OPERATORS
SAN FRANCISCO, September 18, 2008 - The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) today temporarily prohibited the personal use of commercial mobile radio services and devices by on-duty railroad engineers, brakemen, conductors, or rail transit vehicle operators except for personal communications that take place when the train or transit vehicle is stopped and with the approval of the appropriate management personnel.
The CPUC determined that this action was needed due to a June 14, 2008, MUNI accident that may have resulted from the inappropriate personal use of a cell phone while operating the train, as well as the recent Metrolink accident in Chatsworth, which may have been at least partially caused by the inappropriate personal use of a cell phone by the train's engineer.
"Because of the possible danger to passengers, the general public, and the railroad workers themselves, prohibiting the personal use of cellular devices is necessary and reasonable," said CPUC President Michael R. Peevey, who noted that there are no existing federal or state laws, rules, or regulations prohibiting such inappropriate use of cellular devices.
The CPUC's Consumer Protection and Safety Division will prepare a proceeding to determine whether this ban on cellular devices, or other measures, should be adopted on a permanent basis.
The Resolution approved today is at: http://docs.cpuc.ca.gov/PUBLISHED/COMMENT_RESOLUTION/91003.htm.
For more information on the CPUC, please visit www.cpuc.ca.gov.