[tz] NTSB investigation derailed by time zone labyrinth

Paul Eggert eggert at cs.ucla.edu
Sat Jun 6 06:30:48 UTC 2015

When the chair of the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board appeared before 
the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee this week, he was asked 
"Could you just tell us again in plain English why we don't know if this 
operator was on the phone three weeks after the accident?"  He had trouble 
answering, because although the NTSB has detailed timestamped data for the 
engineer's cell phone records, and they have physical access to the phone and 
the phone's passwords, they can't figure out the data's time zones.  The cell 
phone companies don't know either.

My sources:

Jaffe E. We still basically have no idea what happened with the Amtrak 188 
derailment. CityLab 2015-06-04. 

Nixon R. Phone data labyrinth hinders investigation of Amtrak derailment. New 
York Times 2015-06-05. 

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