FTA provides flexibility for transit agencies to meet safety plan requirements

April 24, 2020

The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) this week announced that it will give transit agencies more time to meet the requirements of the Public Transportation Agency Safety Plan (PTASP) regulation in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

“We understand that many transit agencies are experiencing disruptions to normal operating procedures during the COVID-19 public health emergency and, as a result, we are announcing this flexibility while they work to comply with the PTASP regulation,” FTA Acting Administrator K. Jane Williams said in a statement.

The PTASP regulation requires transit agencies to incorporate Safety Management System (SMS) policies and procedures as they develop safety plans to manage safety risks. The regulation set July 20, 2020 as the deadline for transit agencies to certify that they have established a compliant agency safety plan. However, with this recent announcement, FTA is alerting transit agencies that it will provide relief by refraining from taking any enforcement action until December 31, 2020 against agencies that are unable to meet the July 20, 2020 deadline.

“To continue to support the transit industry during this unprecedented public health emergency, we are offering this flexibility, recognizing the vital role that transit agencies play in the response to COVID-19,” Williams added.

In July 2018, FTA published the PTASP Final Rule, which requires certain operators of public transportation systems that receive federal funds under FTA's Urbanized Area Formula Grants to develop safety plans that include the processes and procedures to implement Safety Management Systems (SMS). The PTASP rule became effective on July 19, 2019.

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SOURCE: Federal Transit Administration