[Dept. of Transportation Building, 7201 Corporate Center Drive, Hanover, Maryland] Sharmila Samarasinghe, Virginia, Chair (rotates by jurisdiction, 2-year term), 2018

Appointed by Maryland Secretary of Transportation: Harold G. (Bud) Frank; Christopher Holland.

Appointed by Virginia Secretary of Transportation: Sharmila Samarasinghe; one vacancy.

Appointed by District of Columbia Director of Transportation: one vacancy

Harry R. Hughes Department of Transportation Building, 7201 Corporate Center Drive, Hanover, Maryland, May 2009. Photo by Diane F. Evartt.

Staff: Christopher Holland

c/o Office of Homeland Security, Maryland Department of Transportation
Harry R. Hughes Department of Transportation Building, 7201 Corporate Center Drive, Hanover, MD 21076
(410) 865-1010

Under federal law, all states with a defined rail transit system not under the jurisdiction of the Federal Railroad Administration must have a state safety and security oversight agency. The Tri-State Oversight Committee serves as that agency for the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (encompassing Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia), which operates the Washington Metro metrorail system, Metrobus, and MetroAccess. The Committee organized in 1997 through a memorandum of understanding as a joint effort of the Maryland Department of Transportation, the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation, and District of Columbia Department of Transportation.

Each state safety oversight agency is mandated to develop a program standard for the transit system's safety and security plans; approve the safety and security plans; investigate certain accidents and hazardous conditions; require development of corrective action plans to address safety deficiencies; and approve any corrective action plans. At least every three years, the agency is to independently review the implementation of the safety and security plans.

Members of the Tri-State Oversight Committee represented the jurisdictions served by the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, created by the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Regulation Compact of 1965.

In October 2015, the Federal Transit Administration began safety oversight of the Metro subway system as well through the Tri-State Oversight Committee. That committee was replaced by the Washington Metrorail Safety Commission (WMATA) on March 18, 2019, when the Federal Transit Administration certified the State Safety Oversight Program of the Washington Metrorail Safety Commission. Direct safety oversight of WMATA Metrorail transfered from the Federal Transit Administration to the Washington Metrorail Safety Commission at the close of WMATA's regular service hours on March 18, 2019.

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