NTSB's New Focus: Amtrak Engineer's Cellphone

Brandon Bostian made calls and texted day of the crash, but unclear when
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted May 21, 2015 6:30 AM CDT
NTSB's New Focus: Amtrak Engineer's Cellphone
In this Aug. 21, 2007, photo, Amtrak assistant conductor Brandon Bostian stands by as passengers board a train at the Amtrak station in St. Louis.   (Huy Richard Mach/St. Louis Post-Dispatch via the AP)

The Amtrak engineer who says he doesn't remember anything about the train he was operating flying off the tracks in Philadelphia on May 12 used his cellphone the day of the crash to make calls and text—but it's still unclear whether he was doing so while operating the train, NBC News reports. The NTSB is still scrutinizing phone and data records and says its investigation will be "detailed and lengthy."

Officials are "correlating the time stamps in the engineer's cellphone records with multiple data sources, including the locomotive event recorder, the locomotive outward facing video, recorded radio communications, and surveillance video," the NTSB said in a statement, per the New York Daily News. The agency says it could take up to a year to get to the root of what caused the crash that killed eight people and injured more than 200. (One possibility that's apparently been ruled out: a bullet hitting the train.)

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