Defense Department investigators are looking into whether reported cutbacks in Conrail's police force have resulted in shipments of weapons and ammunition moving unprotected through western New York.

After the meeting at Conrail headquarters in Philadelphia on Tuesday, Conrail and the Defense Department's Military Traffic Management Command office issued statements saying the railroad has agreed to cooperate in a inquiry into the allegations.The investigation comes in response to recent reports in the Buffalo (N.Y.) Evening News alleging that Conrail failed to live up to its security agreements with the Defense Department when the railroad moved several boxcars of artillery shells through Buffalo to Fort Drum.

Regulations require that such boxcars be inspected hourly when a train is stopped. Documents obtained by the News showed at least five hours elapsed between checks when a train stopped in Conrail's Frontier Yard in Buffalo on April 24.