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Feds propose new safety standards for rail workers

Posted 3/29/24

The Federal Transit Administration has for the first time proposed a set of rules and protocols to better ensure the safety of track workers nationwide. The new, comprehensive so-called “minimum standards” would require transit agencies to create programs focusing on track-roadway worker safety. 

Among other obligations, the proposal would require transit agencies to conduct safety risk assessments and put into place redundant sets of protections for the workers, including procedures as well as physical shields such as derailers and shunts, all of which would have to be approved by oversight agencies. It would prohibit individual “rail transit vehicle detection” as the only protection for railroad workers and also establish job safety briefings, training programs, near-miss reporting and documentation, including a track access guide. 

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