Rail

FRA issues rail crossings final rule

Posted on June 13, 2012

The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) announced new regulations requiring railroads to install signs at highway-rail grade and pathway crossings with telephone numbers the public can use to alert railroad companies to unsafe conditions.

Under the final rule, railroads must establish Emergency Notification Systems (ENS) by installing clear and readable signs with toll-free telephone numbers at crossings so the public can report unsafe situations and for railroads to respond to malfunctioning warning signals, vehicles stalled on the tracks or other emergency situations.

Depending on a railroad’s operating characteristics, calls may be received through a 24-hour call center, or for smaller railroads, through an automated answering system or third-party telephone service.

Upon receiving a call, the dispatching railroad is required to contact all trains authorized to operate through the crossing, inform local law enforcement to assist in directing traffic, investigate the report or request that the railroad with maintenance responsibility for the crossing to investigate the report. If the report is substantiated, the railroad is required to take certain actions to remedy the unsafe condition.

Based upon comments received in response to its proposed rule, railroads without an existing ENS will have until July 2015 to establish one. Railroads that currently have an ENS in place may be able to retain existing signs, or will have until July 2015 or July 2017 to replace signs depending upon several factors. FRA’s regulatory impact analysis for the final rule found the total cost will be $15.6 million, which is expected to be off-set by estimated accident and casualty reduction benefits of $57.8 million over a 15-year period.

There are approximately 211,000 public and private highway-rail and pathway grade crossings in the U.S. Many major freight and commuter railroads have systems in place to receive emergency reports. The rule builds upon the experience gained through previous voluntary, state, federal and industry experience. Section 205 of the Rail Safety Improvement Act of 2008 required FRA to issue the regulation.

The final rule can be viewed here.

View comments or post a comment on this story. (0 Comments)

More News

Amtrak CEO calls for new era of infrastructure investment

Moorman outlined projects that warrant significant investment including construction of the Portal North Bridge and new Hudson Tunnels in New Jersey.

Bill introduced requiring greater transparency about train safety audits

The measure was unveiled by two House Representatives from New Jersey, where it was found after a deadly crash in September that NJ Transit was the subject of a deep federal audit.

City to sue Sound Transit, WSDOT over light rail expansion plans

Mercer Island residents — even when driving solo — have had access to I-90's high-occupancy vehicle lanes, however later this year when construction gets underway to add light rail across the I-90 express lanes, that access will go away.

Wash. state Governor budgets $1M to study high-speed rail

The study would come at a time when transit agencies and departments of transportation around the U.S. are watching President Donald Trump for signs of what they can expect in terms of federal funding in the next four years.

UW-Madison team wins Innovation Award in Hyperloop competition

The team competed against 30 teams from colleges and universities from around the world in the second phase of SpaceX’s Hyperloop pod competition.

See More News

Post a Comment

Post Comment

Comments (0)

More From The World's Largest Fleet Publisher

Automotive Fleet

The Car and truck fleet and leasing management magazine

Business Fleet

managing 10-50 company vehicles

Fleet Financials

Executive vehicle management

Government Fleet

managing public sector vehicles & equipment

TruckingInfo.com

THE COMMERCIAL TRUCK INDUSTRY’S MOST IN-DEPTH INFORMATION SOURCE

Work Truck Magazine

The number 1 resource for vocational truck fleets

Schoolbus Fleet

Serving school transportation professionals in the U.S. and Canada

LCT Magazine

Global Resource For Limousine and Bus Transportation

Please sign in or register to .    Close