NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – The Metropolitan Transportation Authority is speeding up a project to improve safety on Metro-North and the Long Island Rail Road.

As WCBS 880’s Paul Murnane reported, the agency approved an additional $11.3 million contract to expedite the retrofitting of hundreds of Metro-North and LIRR coaches for Positive Train Control.

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The MTA already has a $428.5 million contract for PTC, which was awarded last fall.

The technology works to prevent collisions and overspeed derailments on curves.

Metro-North president Joe Giulietti said industry doubts about the mandated technology seem to be fading.

“There are portions of it that still have to be worked on, which means that where we are now is that we are now pushing forward on the technology we know that will work, but we also have to leave some contingencies in there for the other parts that haven’t quite filled in yet,” he said.

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Some board members wonder about the ultimate cost, Murnane reported.

“Bearing in mind that the safety of our customers is the top priority of the MTA and its railroads, we are taking careful steps to accelerate the implementation of this important technology,” said MTA Chairman and CEO Thomas F. Prendergast in a statement.

The MTA said the adjustment will finish the retrofits of 836 LIRR cars and 474 Metro-North cars by April 2017, almost two years ahead of schedule.

The improvement comes following a derailment and collision last May that left dozens injured and a fatal derailment in December.

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