CHICAGO

Train operator admits to dozing off before crash

The operator of a Chicago commuter train that crashed at O’Hare International Airport acknowledged she dozed off before the accident and had also done so last month when she overshot a station platform, a federal investigator said Wednesday.

Before the crash, the operator had been running trains on the nation’s second-largest public transportation system for just two months. In Monday’s accident, which injured more than 30 people, she woke up only as the eight-car train jolted onto the platform and barreled up an escalator leading into the airport. The accident occurred around 3 a.m., as the driver was nearing the end of her shift. The woman had an erratic work schedule and investigators were looking to see if that played a role in her evident fatigue.

“She did admit that she dozed off prior to entering the station. She did not wake again until the train hit,” National Transportation Safety Board investigator Ted Turpin said at a final on-site briefing at the airport.

CAIRO

Military chief el-Sissi resigns so he can run for president

Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, the Egyptian military chief who last summer removed the elected Islamist president, announced Wednesday that he has resigned from the military and will run for president in elections scheduled for next month.

In a nationally televised speech, el-Sissi appeared in his military uniform, saying that it was the last time he would wear it because he was giving it up “to defend the nation” by running for president. He said he was “responding to a call from the people.”

Egyptian law says only civilians can run for president, so his resignation from the military, as well as his posts of military chief and defense minister, was a required step.

El-Sissi is widely expected to win the vote, after months of nationalist fervor since he removed Mohammed Morsi, who in 2012 became Egypt’s first freely elected and civilian president.

LOS ANGELES

TSA urges airport to post armed officers at peak hours

The Transportation Security Administration recommended Wednesday that armed law enforcement officers be posted at security checkpoints and ticket counters during peak hours in the aftermath of last year’s fatal shooting at Los Angeles International Airport.

The 25-page report to Congress obtained by The Associated Press makes 14 recommendations that do not carry a price tag and are somewhat dependent on local authorities who provide airport security.

While airport security has been beefed up since the September 2001 terrorist attacks, the LAX shooting exposed communication problems and gaps in police patrols that left the terminal without an armed officer for nearly 3½ minutes as a gunman targeted TSA officers with a rifle Nov. 1. The AP has reported that the two armed officers assigned to Terminal 3 were on break that morning and hadn’t notified dispatchers.

– From news service reports