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Following a national, months-long search that officially began last year, Metro has hired Patrick Lavin of New York City Transit—part of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority—to oversee safety management.

The announcement comes less than one month after Metro’s Acting Chief Safety Officer Lou Brown said he would resign, effective in April. Brown had replaced James Dougherty, who resigned last September.

In a statement, Lavin touts “more than 30 years’ experience in rail operations and maintenance, as well as safety investigations.” He also pledges to “[combine] two sides of the house so that safety works hand in hand with operations.”

According to Metro General Manager Paul Wiedefeld, Lavin will start on May 9. Per a Metro release:

In his current role in NYCT’s safety department, Mr. Lavin performs in-depth investigations into rail and bus accidents, including mainline rail incidents such as derailments and collisions. In recent years, Mr. Lavin has led multi-disciplinary task forces to improve safety at NYCT; including a 2010 Task Force that was convened to investigate reports of employees falsifying testing and maintenance records, and provided recommendations for improved oversight, training and maintenance practices. He also worked with NYCT’s Division of Buses and New York’s Public Transportation Safety Board to investigate bus fires and mechanical failures, which resulted in significant reductions in both categories.

Before Brown took over, Dougherty had served as Metro’s chief safety officer since April 2010.

Photo by Darrow Montgomery