WASHINGTON (CBSDC/AP) — The people killed in a Metrorail crash in June 2009 in northeast Washington were honored with a plaque near the crash site.
Friday’s unveiling of the plaque will mark the 3-year anniversary of the crash, which killed nine people and injured 80 others. It was the deadliest in the transit system’s history.
District of Columbia Mayor Vincent Gray joined relatives of crash victims, first responders and the chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board at the site.
“Jeanice McMillan, who was a train operator for us, should be on her job, riding the rails and getting us through rush hour,” Mayor Gray said at the ceremony.
The crash was not in vain, however.
“As tragic as the accident was, it has given rise to a number of safety changes at metro,” Gray remarked.
A malfunctioning electronic circuit led to the crash, in which two trains collided near the Fort Totten station.
In addition to the plaque, plans are under way for a memorial park and garden.
In May, the community in which the crash took place publicly opposed a permanent memorial to the victims, citing that they already used the space for neighborhood block parties.
WMATA settled with seven of the nine families of victims of the 2009 Metro crash in March.
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