SMART passenger seating fails initial safety test

The passenger seats seats for Sonoma and Marin counties' commute rail system failed a crash-worthiness test last week, officials said Tuesday.

The manufacturer and Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit District said the seats will be redesigned, but that should not delay delivery of the first two-car set by the end of this year.

"Whatever needs to be done will be corrected," said Gene Germaine, director of business development for Kustom Seating Unlimited of Bellwood, Ill. "As it stands, there is no delay in the normal process in developing the product and testing it and having it signed off and meeting the requirements."

Lisa Cobb, SMART's vehicle and systems manager, said she was surprised by the test failure, but isn't concerned.

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