US rail operator Brightline has taken steps to enhance safety by implementing AI cameras on its trains. The company has received a grant of over $1.6 million from the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Bill to develop an AI monitoring system in partnership with Wi-Tronix. This system aims to collect real-time data on trespassing activities along the rail corridor.
As part of the grant, Brightline will install high-definition forward-facing cameras on all 21 of its locomotives, which operate along the Florida East Coast Railway corridor. The collected data will be used to develop an AI model that can identify unsafe behaviors and pinpoint areas that require community outreach programs, increased law enforcement presence, or engineering upgrades.
The FRA’s Consolidated Rail Infrastructure and Safety Improvements (CRISI) Program has provided a total of $1.4 billion in funding for various rail projects, with a major focus on rail safety and freight supply chains. Brightline’s involvement in this project is significant, given recent investigations into the number of deaths along its corridor. The company saw the highest number of deaths per mile compared to any other US railroad in 2022.
Jennifer Mitchell, the Deputy Administrator of the FRA, highlighted the importance of this grant in reducing the potential for collisions and ensuring safety along the Florida East Coast Railway corridor. She stated that federal investment in innovative technologies will provide new data to address trespassing incidents.
Brightline believes that once fully developed, their AI monitoring system could benefit railroads across the United States. This initiative demonstrates the company’s commitment to prioritize safety and address the pressing issue of trespassing incidents. The use of AI cameras and real-time data collection is expected to play a crucial role in identifying and mitigating unsafe behaviors, ultimately enhancing rail safety for both staff and passengers.
By implementing this advanced technology, Brightline aims to proactively address safety concerns through targeted interventions and improvements. The grant from the FRA not only acknowledges the potential of AI in the industry but also highlights the importance of collaboration between government agencies and private sector companies to ensure the well-being of communities and the overall efficiency of rail operations.
In conclusion, Brightline’s implementation of AI cameras and their collaboration with Wi-Tronix show their commitment to improving safety within the rail industry. By collecting real-time data and using AI algorithms to identify unsafe behaviors, the company aims to target key areas for outreach programs and engineering upgrades. This project, funded through the CRISI Program, exemplifies the importance of government support for innovative technologies that prioritize safety and enhance rail operations.