An update to the NTSB docket involving the investigation of the February 3 train derailment in East Palestine reveals the conversation taking place within the train between the conductor, the engineer, and a conductor trainee on board, and when they knew of an issue with Norfolk Southern 32N.

The conversation was captured by the onboard image recorder.

The audio shows a critical alert was first received at 8:53 pm, followed by the engineer on board saying, "All right...here we go."

The report shows the initial confusion on what caused the alarm from the crew and the speculation of what triggered the emergency braking on the train, including the more than 6 minutes before the trainee said, "We went apart— we went apart."

According to the report, the train was traveling at approximately 21 mph as it headed into East Palestine at 8:50 pm. The locomotive passed over the alerting hot box detector in East Palestine at approximately 8:52:47 pm, and the critical alarm sounded at 8:53:15 pm. The train slowly decelerated over the next minute, followed by several alarms sounding in the cab at 8:54:22 pm.

The train then quickly decelerated, stopping at 8:55:04 pm, but it was too late; the train had already derailed.

Read the actual transcript as the crew discussed the issues they saw and communicated with dispatch. The NTSB Vehicle Recorder Division received a total of 63 video files from five camera sources, with three of these sources onboard the lead locomotive from which this transcript was created.

The conversation starts off with the conductor commenting, "They still have us at (Conway) at midnight.”

At times are eastern, p.m., and the conversation is transcribed as heard from the recordings. 'Undetermined voice' means not being able to determine who was speaking.

08:52:10.3 [sound of train horn]
08:52:11.5 [clicking sounds of bell]
08:52:15.4 Conductor: "hey (unintelligible), did anybody ever tell you you were supposed to let dispatcher know when you got three hours to go?"
08:52:20.8 Trainee: "umm...yeah...(unintelligible)."

08:52:24.0 Conductor: "what's that?"
08:52:24.8 Trainee (somebody did say that).
08:52:26.6 [sound of train horn]
08:52:30.1 Conductor: "(unintelligible) get on the phone and say hey (unintelligible)..."
08:52:34.0 Trainee: "yeah I was about to."
08:52:36.3 Conductor: "we'll call at ten o'clock and say uhh...thirty-two-N three hours."
8:52:40.7 Conductor: "well this detector's the one I got caught on right here we stopped right here at this (expletive) crossing."

8:52:45.0 Engineer: "mhmm."
8:52:45.2 Conductor: "we couldn't get up to speed."
8:52:47.0 [the train passed over a hot box detector]
8:52:47.7 Conductor: "at the crossing we re-crewed right there.
8:52:49.1 Engineer: "okay."
8:52:51.1 Engineer: "at the crossing?"
8:52:51.7 Conductor: "right-yeah...and they expect us to get to nine miles an hour."
8:52:54.0 Engineer: "you wasn't gonna...you wasn't gonna get that...did the gate stay down?
8:52:58.0 Conductor: "yeah...I don't know why they stopped there anyways."

8:52:58.7 [multiple overlapping comments]

8:53:01.7 Engineer: "they did stay down?"
8:53:03.5 Conductor: "yeah...or they stayed up they stayed up."

8:53:05.6 Engineer: "oh okay."
8:53:06.0 Conductor:  "they stopped far enough back."
8:53:07.5 Engineer: "yeah."
8:53:07.7 Conductor: "we re-crewed right there."
8:53:08.9 Engineer:  "okay."
8:53:09.3 Conductor: "and we couldn't get up to nine miles an hour there."
8:53:10.8 Engineer: "yeah you ain't gonna get that there."
8:53:12.5 Conductor: "sometimes I try to stop—"

8:53:14.5 [electronic voice] CRITICAL ALARM, CRITICAL ALARM, CRITICAL ALARM. Norfolk Southern milepost four nine point eight track one hot box axle one zero one south rail.

8:53:16.5 Engineer: "all right...here we go."

8:53:18.8 [unintelligible comments]

8:53:23.2 [the conductor stood up]

8:53:24.6 Conductor: "hold on."
8:53:27.8 [the conductor trainee slammed both hands on the desk]
8:53:32.9 Conductor: "that's us."
8:53:34.6 Trainee: "what?"
8:53:35.1 Engineer: "one zero one south rail."
8:53:37.0 Trainee: "yep."
8:53:37.2 Conductor: "south is your side right?"
8:53:40.4 Engineer: "yeah."
8:53:41.3 Conductor: "aright."
8:53:43.0 Conductor: (come out (unintelligible)).
8:53:44.5 [sound of single beep]

8:53:49.8 [sound of single beep]

8:53:52.4 Conductor: "write that down."
8:53:54.2 Trainee: "one zero one south rail?"
8:53:55.5 Conductor: "yeaaaah."
8:53:57.9 Trainee: "(unintelligible) how far back is that?"
8:54:00.6 Conductor: "hundred and one? we'll call wayside they'll let us know."
8:54:02.4 Engineer: (unintelligible).
8:54:03.2 Undetermined voice: "hundred and ten?"
8:54:05.0 Conductor: "hundred and one..."
8:54:07.8 Trainee: (unintelligible).
8:54:10.1 Engineer: "bring it down to a stop."
8:54:13.7 Undetermined voice: "yeah."

8:54:15.9 Conductor: "welp we ain't makin' it now."
8:54:17.6 Engineer: "just (unintelligible) the one you were talking about."

8:54:21.7 [sound of cab signal alert, the in-cab signal dropped from clear to restricting, and the engineer physically reacted immediately]
8:54:24.5 [an overhead red light illuminated in the cab]
8:54:24.9 [sound of end of train device (EOTD) alert]
8:54:26.5 [sounds of multiple simultaneous alerts, and mechanical bell. The mechanical bell continued ringing through 8:54:47.1]

8:54:26.8 Engineer: "woah something's goin' on."
8:54:28.0 Conductor:  "yep."
8:54:29.4 Trainee: "I'm calling it...emergency."
8:54:31.0 Engineer: "we went into emergency."
8:54:34.6 Trainee: "(unintelligible) brakes in emergency - emergency emergency."

8:54:38.6 Conductor: (unintelligible).
8:54:39.4 Engineer: "what happened back there?"
8:54:40.9 Conductor: "something happened."
8:54:47.8 Trainee: "uhh we tone up the dispatcher first right?"
8:54:50.1 Conductor: "yeah go ahead six four eight."

8:54:51.9 [sounds of locomotive shuddering]

8:54:56.4 Trainee: "something's wrong. I think I typed it wrong."
8:54:59.7 Conductor: "that's all right we'll get it."

8:55:00.4 [sound of air whooshing]

8:55:01.3 Conductor "that's odd."

8:55:03.5 [the locomotive stopped]

8:55:03.7 Engineer: that's not good.

8:55:04.9 Undetermined voice: "exactly."
8:55:05.1 Conductor: "(unintelligible). that's not good at all."

8:55:06.2 Engineer: "we're not on— hope we ain't on the ground nowhere back there.
8:55:09.6 Conductor:  "yeah...we'll find out."
8:55:11.3 Conductor: "how's your air? got any air in the back?"
8:55:15.0 Engineer: "we went in emergency."
8:55:15.8 Trainee: "I can't hear lemme (tone/turn) him up."
8:55:16.9 Engineer: "here I'll tone him up."
8:55:18.0 Conductor: "(unintelligible) six four eight."

8:55:19.6 [overlapping comments between trainee and conductor]

8:55:19.8 Undetermined voice: "I gotcha."

8:55:20.0 [sounds of dialing]

8:55:28.9 Trainee: "you wanna talk to 'em (unintelligible)?"
8:55:32.2 Conductor: "I got it."
8:55:33.9 Trainee: "I was just gonna say...I can't (read/really) (hear him) (unintelligible).
8:55:35.4 Conductor: "I got it."
8:55:38.9 Conductor: "takin' a walk."

8:55:40.0 [the conductor trainee stood up]

8:55:40.2 Engineer: "hey (non-pertinent word) to an unknown individual
8:55:42.1 Trainee: (unintelligible).
8:55:46.9 Conductor: "they aughta be coming by maybe they can (see)."

8:55:48.8 Disptacher: "dispatcher thirty two N over."
8:55:50.0 Conductor-RDO: "thirty two N."
8:55:52.0 Trainee: "thirty two."

8:55:52.9 Disptacher: "(are you (unintelligible) there?)"
8:55:54.0 Conductor-RDO: "yeah we got a critical alarm and now we went into emergency here we're at P–C forty eight dot four."
8:56:01.0 Disptacher: "P–C forty eight dot four roger that. Cleveland east five forty seven over."

8:56:04.7 [sounds of radio static]

8:56:07.0 Disptacher: "thirty two N eastbound (unintelligible) track one head end forty eight dot four is in emergency. come down restricted uhh slow down (unintelligible) over."

8:56:14.4 [the headlights were dimmed]
8:56:15.8 [sounds of radio static]

8:56:23.5 Disptacher: "aright roger."
8:56:24.5 Conductor: "arrright you wanna...?"
8:56:26.8 Engineer: "huh?"
8:56:27.6 "Conductor, I dunno...should we (unintelligible)...?"

8:56:29.2 Dispatcher: "(unintelligible) thirty-two N (unintelligible) restricted (unintelligible) roger. [over the radio to another train]"
8:56:30.5 Engineer "what's that?"
8:56:31.7 Engineer: "I didn't release the air yet."

8:56:33.1 [unintelligible radio conversation between dispatcher and another train]

8:56:37.0 Engineer: "earlier it was running just fine."
8:56:37.9 Disptacher: "he's at forty eight dot four over. [over the radio to another train]"
8:56:41.7 Trainee: "(he gonna wait up for us?)"

8:56:42.2 [sound of air whooshing]
8:56:43.1 Engineer" who else do I call...we gotta call wayside (radio transmission from wayside)."
8:56:44.0 Conductor: "uhh...call wayside."
8:56:45.5 Engineer: "what's that— one two seven?"
8:56:49.3: Engineer: "one two..."

8:56:51.0 [unintelligible crew comments]

8:56:55.8 Engineer: "well I don't hear no (courses/horses) back there."
8:56:59.6 Engineer "somethin's wrong though."
8:57:03.2 Conductor: "yeah they'll uhh...
8:57:04.9 Trainee: "they didn't call us."
8:57:06.4 Conductor: "yeah."
8:57:07.3 Conductor: "yeah what's that...what's wayside on there?"
8:57:09.0 Trainee: "I'm trying to see what we got here."
8:57:09.6 Conductor: "you got to call them."
8:57:09.7 Engineer: "one two seven."

8:57:10.6 [sounds of dialing]

8:57:12.9 Conductor: "what was that forty— what detector was that...forty...?"

8:57:16.0 Trainee: "uhh..."

8:57:16.2 [radio tone back]

8:57:16.7 Conductor: "forty nine? (unintelligible).
8:57:21.3 Conductor:  "we're on track what...one? right."
8:57:26.4 Engineer: "(well/roger)"
8:57:27.2 Trainee: forty nine dot eight.
8:57:28.1 Engineer: "well I can release the air...see if she's comin' up."
8:57:30.2 Conductor: "up to you."
8:57:31.6 Engineer: "okay."

8:57:32.2 [sounds of levers moving]
8:57:32.4 [sounds of air whooshing]

8:57:33.3 Trainee: "we got a critical alarm but it's..."
8:57:36.6 Engineer: "that pisses me off (unintelligible).
8:57:38.3 Conductor: "we didn't get any air in the back— that means we've come apart."
8:57:41.4 Engineer: "I hope it ain't back there by all that— 'cause I was bringing it down."
8:57:45.0 Conductor: "mhmm."
8:57:45.7 Trainee: (unintelligible).
8:57:45.8 Conductor: "I didn't feel a pull."
8:57:47.0 Engineer: "huh?"
8:57:47.5 Conductor: "I didn't feel a pull on it."
8:57:48.4 Engineer: "me either."
8:57:49.1 Conductor: "(I see the flows come up.)"
8:57:50.4 Engineer:  (unintelligible) I didn't release that yet.

8:57:52.7 [sounds of levers moving]

8:57:56.5 Undetermined voice: "you gotta let the road foreman know."

8:58:01.0 [the inward rearward-facing camera recording ended]

8:58:01.7 Conductor: "one step at a time."
8:58:06.2 Conductor: "rear emergency."
8:58:14.2 Conductor: "you got anything on the rear yet?"
8:58:15.7 Engineer: "might take a little bit."
8:58:19.2 Conductor: "if we get it on the rear that means at least we're still together."
8:58:21.8 Engineer: "right— I think we came apart."
8:58:23.8 Conductor: "I think you’re right."
8:58:37.9 Trainee: 'they got that uhh...(slide around past us on the other) (unintelligible).
8:58:42.0 Conductor: (unintelligible).
8:58:43.6 Engineer: "yeah it ain’t comin’ up man."

8:58:45.0 Conductor: "yeah."
8:58:45.4 Engineer: "and it wasn’t a knuckle either."
8:58:47.6 Conductor: "unless an air hose came apart."
8:58:49.1 Engineer: "you think it was a draw bar?"
8:58:51.2 Conductor: "I think we woulda felt that."
8:58:52.5 Engineer: "I was in emerg— I mean I was in dynamic."
8:58:55.3 Conductor: you think you woulda felt...
8:58:56.5 Engineer: "I mean they called emerg— they called an alarm...even if it was a-a-a critical alarm...though definitely * hot box detector I think something could possibly...we possibly could be on the ground.
8:59:06.8 Trainee: "that's what I was thinking because...if it was..."
8:59:09.4 Conductor: "we'll see."
8:59:11.5 Engineer: "'cause even if we...if we uhh... (unintelligible)."
8:59:14.2 Undetermined voice: "I hope not (unintelligible)."
8:59:15.1 Undetermined voice: "I didn't feel no tug."
8:59:16.0 Undetermined voice: "it wouldn't have rung a critical alarm like that."
8:59:17.8 Conductor: "I didn't feel no tug either...that's that's what worries me."

8:59:22.5 Undetermined voice: [sound of yawn]

8:59:23.8 Trainee: "yeah it wouldn't say critical alarm 'cause it can't read us...it really can't read us apart."
8:59:29.2 Engineer: "it's not coming up there at the D-P-U either."
8:59:35.4 Conductor: "(I gotta/better) call the road foreman..."
8:59:36.6 Undetermined voice: "you go ahead."
8:59:36.9 Undetermined voice: "I did."
8:59:37.3 Trainee: "we went apart— we went apart."
8:59:39.7 Undetermined voice: "yep."

8:59:40.1 [multiple overlapping comments]
8:59:41.7 Conductor: "you want them to come on first right?"
8:59:43.7 Undetermined voice: "what's that?"
8:59:44.2 Conductor: "yeah you did— we did tone them right?"
8:59:46.8 Engineer: "no."
8:59:46.8 Trainee: "no."
8:59:48.5 Engineer: "no I toned— we toned wayside."
8:59:49.7 Conductor: "wayside right."

8:59:50.2 [sounds of dialing]

8:59:56.2 Undetermined voice: "uh sir? (unintelligible).

8:59:57.4 Radio Transmission from wayside: "wayside answering (calling)."
8:59:58.8 Conductor: "there he is."

8:59:59.4 Undetermined voice: "who's that?"

9:00:00.0 [the inward forward-facing recording ended]
9:00:00.8 Undetermined voice: "wayside."

9:00:02.6 [end of transcript]

21 News will broadcast its next '101 West' investigation, which takes a deep look into rail safety and what, if anything, has changed within the industry in the last year and asks the question, "Are we any safer."

"101 West" will air this Thursday, February, at 7 p.m. on WFMJ.