February 6, 2016

Operation Lifesaver awards $204k for safety campaigns

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Operation Lifesaver, Inc. (OLI), in partnership with the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), announced more than $200,000 in grants to 13 State Operation Lifesaver programs for a variety of highway-rail grade crossing safety public education projects, in conjunction with the nonprofit safety group’s ongoing “See Tracks? Think Train!” public awareness campaign. The grants will be awarded to Operation Lifesaver organizations [...]

Most railroads won’t meet PTC deadline

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WASHINGTON — The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) sent its Status of Positive Train Control Implementation report to Congress. The report is mandated by the House of Representatives Appropriations Committee and shows that after seven years and significant assistance from FRA, most railroads will miss the Dec. 31, 2015 positive train control (PTC) implementation deadline that Congress established [...]

Closter council backs safety policy for oil transport

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CLOSTER – The governing body offered its support for establishing rail safety measures tied to transporting crude oil on DOT-111 rail cars through Bergen County. Rail safety has recently become an increasingly significant issue among residents and local governments. As the transportation of highly-flammable Bakken crude oil through the county increases – a reported 7-million [...]

Rail safety upgrades stalled on Capitol Hill

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Two months after a deadly Amtrak crash outside of Philadelphia thrust the issue back into the spotlight, frustrated legislators in the Northeast are seemingly no closer to getting the rail-safety upgrades they want. The transportation measure sitting on the floor of the Senate would seem the best vehicle for them, even as it faces an [...]

Sen. Sherrod Brown pushes bill for safer oil tankers

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U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D. – Ohio) on Wednesday called for doing more to better protect Ohio communities by removing the older railcars transporting hazardous materials. “We’ve seen too many derailments of trains with unsafe cars, often carrying crude oil and other hazardous material. It’s time to put a stop to these dangerous and costly [...]

GOP bill would undermine auto, rail safety regulations

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Washington, D.C. – At a time of record auto recalls and high-profile train wrecks, Republicans are working on legislation to roll back safety regulation of the auto and railroad industries. A bill approved this week on a party-line vote by a Senate committee brims with industry-sought provisions that would block, delay or roll back safety [...]

FRA campaigns to enhance grade crossing safety

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WASHINGTON – As part of its ongoing effort to improve safety at railroad grade crossings, the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) Feb. 27 announced the first step in a new, multi-faceted campaign aimed at strengthening enforcement and safety awareness at grade crossings. The first phase of this effort calls upon local law enforcement agencies to show [...]

Editorial: Do not reduce train crews to one

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With profit seemingly driving all business decisions, it shouldn’t be a surprise that the country’s major railroad companies are continuing their quest to reduce freight trains crews … to one person. Not surprising, but scary. The railroad bosses are united in their desire for this change, citing technological advances. Labor groups, those living on rail [...]

NTSB outlines measures to protect rail workers

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Railroad and rail transit roadway workers are subject to on-the-job risks and hazards markedly different from those faced by other railroad employees. The jobs of railroad engineers and conductors include risks primarily related to moving trains – derailments, collisions with other trains; the jobs of roadway workers involve hazards that include moving rolling stock and [...]

Panel recommends safety improvements at N.Y. MTA

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Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s (MTA) Blue Ribbon Panel studying safety and maintenance practices at its three railroads yesterday announced 29 recommendations to improve operations and safety. Created a year ago after a series of safety-related incidents at MTA Metro-North Railroad, Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) and New York City Transit (NYCT), the panel identified Metro-North’s safety [...]