November 27, 2015

Get PTC done ASAP, FRA’s Feinberg advises


The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) will soon unveil its expectations for railroads to meet the newly extended Dec. 31, 2018, deadline for positive train control (PTC) implementation, FRA Administrator Sarah Feinberg told members of the Railroad Safety Advisory Committee (RSAC) last week. Feinberg urged railroads not to make the extension their primary focus, but to focus on [...]

Hynes testifies at FRA’s Risk Reduction hearing


Alternate National Legislative Director Greg Hynes testified Thursday, August 28 at the Federal Railroad Administration’s (FRA) Risk Reduction public hearing. The FRA published a notice of proposed rulemaking February 27, 2015 requiring certain railroads to develop a Risk Reduction Program (RRP). The Rail Safety Improvement Act of 2008 already requires the development and implementation of [...]

FRA’s Szabo addresses 50th meeting of RSAC


The following are Federal Railroad Administrator Joseph Szabo’s opening remarks to those attending the 50th meeting of the Railroad Safety Advisory Committee (RSAC) in Washington on Oct. 31, 2013. Today marks the end of a stressful month. The government shutdown forced us to put a lot of important work on hold. And since it ended, we’ve [...]

RSAC holds emergency meeting


WASHINGTON – The Federal Railroad Administration’s (FRA) Railroad Safety Advisory Committee (RSAC) met today in an emergency session to begin consideration of additional regulatory or other safety measures following the derailment in Lac-Megantic, Quebec, Canada earlier this summer. “Safety is our top priority,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “While 2012 was the safest year [...]

Federal panel hears concerns on railroad safety

WASHINGTON – A federal panel heard comments Wednesday on the adequacy of safety regulations for railroads, during the first of two meetings that will focus on last month’s deadly train derailment in Lac-Megantic, Quebec. Fatigue is the top safety concern among train crew members, said a representative of one of the major unions for railroad [...]

Emergency RSAC meeting announced

The Federal Railroad Administration announced Aug. 8 that it would hold an emergency meeting of the Railroad Safety Advisory Committee (RSAC) Aug. 29. The meeting will focus on the July 6 train derailment in Lac-Mégantic, Quebec. Preliminary findings from the derailment and safety procedures that may not have been followed will be discussed. RSAC was [...]

FRA mandates improved locomotive safety, comfort


WASHINGTON – A final rule on improved locomotive cab safety and comfort has been published by the Federal Railroad Administration. The final rule, affecting all new and remanufactured locomotives in road and yard service, follows collaboration among the FRA, rail labor and carriers through the Railroad Safety Advisory Committee (RSAC) process and becomes effective June 8. Significant in [...]

Conductor certification now a reality


WASHINGTON – It’s now official. Conductor certification, mandated by the Rail Safety Improvement Act of 2008, became effective Jan. 1. In a final rule, published by the Federal Railroad Administration Nov. 9, railroads were ordered to implement, by Jan. 1, a formal training program for certifying conductors and a formal process for training prospective conductors, thus [...]

Conductor cert, passenger HOS regs on tap

Strang, Jo; Jo Strang

WASHINGTON — The Federal Railroad Administration will soon publish final rules instituting conductor certification and imposing new hours-of-service limitations on intercity passenger-train and commuter employees in safety sensitive positions. FRA Associate Administrator for Safety Jo Strang made the announcement at the UTU’s regional meeting June 21 in San Antonio, Texas. She observed that since former [...]

Solving problems through a positive approach

By Assistant President Arty Martin Viewers of the cable television sitcom, Fawlty Towers, may recall an episode in which Basil Fawlty (played by John Cleese) beat his broken-down car with a branch, blaming the car rather than his own failure to maintain it. Being too negatively focused on a problem rather than identifying and pursuing [...]