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Critical Link Executive Reflects on Philadelphia Derailment and Future of Train Technology

In the wake of a Philadelphia train derailment that killed eight people and hospitalized more than 200, Critical Link President John Fayos says he is optimistic about the future of railroad safety.

“This is a heart-wrenching tragedy,” said Fayos. “I look forward to a time when we will no longer see these types of devastating – and preventable – incidents in the news. Thankfully, that could be very soon.”

Positive Train Control (PTC) is a complicated system of sensors and GPS that can override the engineer’s actions and slows the locomotive in situations like the one in Philadelphia, where the train was speeding toward a sharp curve. Critical Link products have been used to accelerate the development of new PTC technologies and rail signaling companies have sought out the expertise of Critical Link engineers to aid in the creation of these systems.

“The implementation of PTC is a complex issue and there are a number of political and financial considerations that need to be sorted out before the use of these systems can become universal,” explained Fayos. “There is immense cost involved in making these changes to the trains and railways, so it is inspiring to see companies making this investment in safety. Everyone here at Critical Link is honored to play a role in advancing technology that has the potential to save lives.”

Based in Syracuse, New York, Critical Link provides off-the-shelf products and engineering services that help advanced technology companies develop and bring new products to market more quickly. For more information, visit www.criticallink.com.


About Critical Link

Syracuse, N.Y.-based Critical Link (www.criticallink.com) is an embedded systems engineering firm, offering a broad range of highly customizable, small form factor SOMs and development kits for highly integrated, embedded systems for medical, scientific, and industrial applications. Critical Link is a member of the Altera Design Services Network, a Platinum Partner of the TI Design Network, and a certified member of the Arrow Consulting Engineering Services (ACES) network. Critical Link is ISO 9001:2008 and ISO 14001 Registered by SRI Quality System Registrar.