Feds to detail US rail security efforts after Paris attack

Feds to detail US rail security efforts after Paris attack

The Obama administration is planning to detail its efforts on Thursday to secure the nation's railways after a thwarted attack by a heavily armed gunman on a high-speed train in Europe.

Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson and Transportation Secretary Administration (TSA) chief Peter Neffenger are scheduled to speak about rail security at Washington's Union Station on Thursday afternoon. 

The briefing comes after lawmakers have called for the TSA to boost its presence on U.S. railways after three Americans stopped a gunman and saved hundreds of passengers on a train from Amsterdam to Paris.

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The U.S. residents were vacationing in Europe when they encountered the gunman on a train.

The suspect, Moroccan citizen Ayoub El Khazzani, 26, had just fired upon a passenger and was attempting to use his AK-47.

Sens. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) and Cory Booker (D-N.J.) have urged the TSA to "to implement security and safety improvements ... to our country’s public transportation and passenger rail systems" since the thwarted attack. 

"This effort comes on the heels of an attempted terrorist attack on a Paris-bound train last week in which three Americans successfully subdued the attacker," Blumenthal's office said in a statement previewing an appearance earlier this month by the Connecticut senator at Hartford's Union Station. 

Johnson and Neffenger are scheduled to be joined on Thursday by Amtrak Chief of Police Polly Hanson.