NTSB to investigate Disney monorail crash
The collision of two monorail trains this past weekend at Walt Disney World has sparked government interest. The National Transportation Safety Board said it will examine the crash that ended with the death of one monorail operator. The move is an unique decision from a government agency usually known for investigating airline crashes.
The announcement comes on the heels of Disney inspectors coming to the conclusion that the accident occurred when the train did not properly switch tracks. Disney personel have concluded that the mechanism that was to switch the train from the Epcot line to the Magic Kingdom line that would have taken the train to the maintenance line malfunctioned.
The train instead moved in reverse back down the Epcot line--likely overriding the emergency stop system in place--where it collided with a stationary train carrying a small number of passengers. Austin Wuennenberg, the operator of the now defunct train was the only casualty.
"We'll be looking at operating control systems, and their procedures, and the different procedures they use on the monorail to position trains," NTSB spokesman Peter Knudson told The Chicago Tribune.
The Orlando Sentinel has compiled a video in remembrance of Wuennenberg. You can watch the video here.