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Enhancing Rail Safety


The Federal Railroad Administration's Programs and Initiatives. April 29, 2008. 2 ... Tank Car Rule. Proposed DOT Rule on Railroad Tank Car Safety Standards ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Enhancing Rail Safety

Enhancing Rail Safety
  • The Federal Railroad Administrations Programs
    and Initiatives
  • April 29, 2008

DOTs Proposed Rail Safety Legislation
  • S. 918 H.R. 1516 Rail Safety Reauthorization
  • 4-Year Reauthorization (fiscal years 2008-2011)
  • Authorizes Safety Risk Reduction Program
  • Regulatory Authority over Hours of Service
  • Mandatory Updating of DOT National Crossing

Significant Regulatory Actions
  • Electronically Controlled Pneumatic (ECP)
    Brakes Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM),
  • Passenger Train Emergency Systems Final Rule,
  • Railroad Operating Rules Final Rule, 2/13/08.

Significant Regulatory Actions
  • Enhanced performance standard for Toxic
    Inhalation Hazard (TIH) tank cars NPRM, 4/01/08.
  • The Rail Hazmat Routing interim final rule (IFR)
    will ensure that railroads are routing
    security-sensitive materials over the routes
    posing the least safety and security risks.  In
    addition, railroads would have to enhance their
    current security plans to help improve en route
    storage and delays in transit, and to regularly
    inspect all hazardous material tank cars for
    evidence of tampering, 4/16/08.

Tank Car Rule
  • Proposed DOT Rule on Railroad Tank Car Safety
  • Maximum speed limit of 50 mph for PIH tank cars
  • Within 8 years, all PIH tank cars would have to
    meet enhanced tank-head and shell
    puncture-resistance standards (increase in the
    gross weight of tank cars from 263,000 pounds to
    286,000 pounds to allow for implementation)
  • In the interim, for PIH tank cars that do not
    meet the performance standards and are operating
    in non-signaled or dark territory, maximum
    speed limit of 30 mph

Emergency Preparedness
  • Enhancing existing emergency egress, rescue
    access, and emergency communication standards by
  • Emergency window exits in non-main levels
    (previously they were required only on main
  • Rescue access windows in each passenger
    compartment of all cars and, in new cars, roof
    access locations
  • PA systems in all cars and, in new cars, intercom

Final Rule on RR Operating Rules
  • On February 13, FRA issued a Final Rule on
    Railroad Operating Rules that make substantial
    changes to how railroads will conduct testing of
    their employees and federalizes specific
    operating rules that will address almost half of
    all H/F accidents.
  • Effective with the implementation of this Final
    Rule, most railroads will be required to perform
    field testing of their employees based on
    specific operating rule failures. These failures
    will be identified during required quarterly,
    bi-annual and annual data reviews.
  • The Final Rule also addresses blind shoves,
    establishes procedures to ensure that hand
    operated switches and fixed derails are returned
    to their normal position, prohibits equipment
    left out to foul and establishes a procedure to
    allow employees to challenge, in good faith,
    supervisor instructions

RR Operating Rules
  • FRA received four Petitions for Reconsideration
    concerning Final Rule 217-218 published in the
    Federal Register February 13.
  • AAR and APTA want a delay of 6 months in the
    training and recordkeeping sections.
  • AAR wants relief from shove move requirements on
    departure tracks equipped with shove lights. Good
    Faith Challenge section to mirror that found in
    RWP Rule and clarification on what procedures
    will be deemed to meet FRAs requirements
    concerning new technologies that will provide
    point protection for RCL movements.
  • Nebraska State Legislative Board seeks to have
    FRA withdraw the Final Rule as untimely, in that
    it was issued 16 months after the NPRM in
    noncompliance with USC 20103(b).
  • UTU, BLET, and four additional organizations
    seeks to eliminate the Individual Liability
    provisions of the Final Rule as they could have a
    chilling effect on self-reporting and because it
    already exists at Part 209 Subpart D.

Federal Railroad AdministrationRailroad Safety
Advisory Committee (RSAC)
  • Full RSAC committee - 31 organizations
    representing labor, railroads, suppliers and
    manufacturers, States, and passenger advocates -
    plus advisors from Federal Transit
    Administration, the National Transportation
    Safety Board (NTSB), Canada, Mexico, and other
    diverse groups
  • Since RSAC was federally chartered on March 25,
    1996, 24 tasks have been accepted and more than
    375 Committee, working group, and task force
    meetings have been conducted to address critical
    railroad safety issues.

RSAC Bridge Safety Group (new)
  • Group has been formed.
  • All interested stakeholders are represented.
  • First meeting set for April 24 and 25, 2008.
  • Objective date for final report to FRA is
    November 2008.

Federal Railroad AdministrationNational Rail
Safety Action Plan Highlights
  • Confidential Close-Call Reporting System (C3RS)
    pilot program C3RS is an FRA-funded
    demonstration project to improve safety
    practices. It is based on learning about
    potentially unsafe conditions, or close call
    events, that pose the risk of more serious
    consequences. The C3RS demonstration project is
    designed to help adapt a confidential reporting
    system to the needs of the U.S. railroad industry
    and to evaluate its effectiveness in improving
    safety. In addition to FRA, stakeholders include
    labor organizations, railroad carriers, Bureau of
    Transportation Statistics, and the Volpe Center.
  • Track geometry cars will perform automated
  • New enhancements to high-resolution video joint
    bar inspection system

Federal Railroad AdministrationRail Integrity
Division (new)
  • Activated in 2008 to review nondestructive rail
    inspection processes utilized by Class Is.
  • Consists of one headquarters-based supervisory
    specialist and 8 regional specialists.
  • Responsible for developing recommendations on
    rail flaw test programs, rail inspection cycles,
    rail flaw technological advancements, operator
    qualification and certification, and analysis
    processes associated with rail flaw-caused
  • Group will focus on ensuring that all rail
    inspection processes are adhered to.
  • Group will develop and maintain necessary data
    base to review railroad inspection cycles and
    monitor compliance.
  • Group will develop an audit process for rail
    inspection vehicles to maintain a minimum

FRA Safety Enforcement Program
  • Overview
  • Federal Safety Statutes enforced by FRA
  • Enforcement Tools Available
  • FRAs Procedures and Policies on Enforcement
  • FRAs dollar recovery levels from initial civil
    penalty claims
  • The process for settlement or litigation of civil
    claims for civil penalties

Risk Reduction Program (RRP) Why Is This
Program Being Created?
  • Over 50 reduction from 1977-85
  • Less change from 1985 present, but declining in
    the past 10 years

What is RRP?
  • An FRA-led industrywide initiative to reduce
    accidents and injuries, and build strong safety
    cultures, by developing innovative methods,
    processes, and technologies to identify and
    correct individual and systemic factors
    contributing to safety problems using upstream
    predictive data.

Basic Concepts of RRP
  • Commitment from all stakeholders
  • Voluntary, confidential non-punitive
  • Systematic and objective data gathering,
    analysis, and reporting
  • Problem-solving and corrective action
  • Long-term sustaining mechanisms

An Overall View
Reportable Accidents
FRA Database
Reactive Risk Management Systems
Accountable Accidents
Railroad Records
Inspections and Audits
Close Calls
Proactive Risk Management
At-risk Behaviors
Culture Surveys
Organizational/Workplace Factors
Leadership Factors
Leadership Training
RRP Goals
  • Short-Term
  • To achieve an aggregate 50 reduction in
    reportable accidents and injuries in RRP Pilot
    Projects targeted safety areas in 5 years.
  • Long-Term
  • To achieve 50 reduction in reportable accidents
    and injuries industrywide in 10 years.

RRP - How We Will Do This
Continue to strengthen regulatory enforcement
approaches while adding complementary
non-enforcement approaches
Potential RRP Initiatives
  • Close call reporting systems
  • Peer-to-peer observation and feedback systems
  • Non-punitive root cause incident investigation
  • Track joint bar inspection systems
  • Track quality indexes
  • Fatigue risk management systems

Close Call Background April 2002present
  • Initiated research project
  • Formed Close Call Planning Committee
  • Developed white paper
  • Conducted workshop April 2003
  • Planned demonstration project
  • Developed model MOU May 2003 March 2005
  • Planning committee role changes to oversight
    April 2005
  • Began planning program evaluation April 2005
  • Began pilot site preparation February 2006
  • Begin C3RS operation February 2007 at UP North
    Platte Service Unit
  • Second site started April 2008 at CP Chicago
    Service Area
  • Anticipate third site will be Alaska Railroad

Who is participating?
  • Primary Stakeholders
  • Federal Agencies
  • Federal Railroad Administration (FRA)
  • Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS)
  • Volpe Center
  • Railroad Carriers
  • Union Pacific Railroad
  • Canadian Pacific Railway
  • Alaska Railroad
  • Association of American Railroads
  • American Short Line and Regional Railroad
  • Railroad Labor Organizations
  • Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen
  • United Transportation Union (UTU)
  • Brotherhood of Railroad Signalmen (BRS)

What have we learned so far?
  • Steady reporting rate 1.5 reports/day
  • Reports are almost exclusively first-person.
  • The Peer Review Team has begun to identify trends
    in reports.
  • Identified events that were unknown to carrier.
  • Corrective actions showing positive impact on
  • Dispute resolution process needs clarification.
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