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FRA Proposes to Update Engineer Certification

While not unexpected for many of us, FRA proposed this month to revise the regulation (49 CFR 240) that governs the certification of locomotive engineers.

The changes seek to align 240 with 242 which contain the requirements for conductor certification and was published 20 years later. FRA has stated that it expects these changes will result in savings gained from moving from a paper-based submission system to an electronic one.

What is FRA proposing to change?

  1. Clarify FRA's jurisdiction and update definitions to align with those in 242
  2. Update the submission process so engineer and conductor certifications have the same review board and process
  3. Update the criteria for Designated Supervisors of Locomotive Engineers (DSLEs) to allow locomotive service engineers or remote control operators to be DLSEs limited by his/her's qualification
  4. Add two additional categories of types of service: remote control operators and student remote control operators
  5. Update the individual's duty to provide data on safety conduct as a motor vehicle operator and prior service on another railroad to align with 240 requirements
  6. Update how railroads address substance abuse disorders and alcohol and drug rules compliance to align with 24
  7. Update the training requirements to align with 242 and 243 (FRA's Training Standards Rule)
  8. Provide clarification on testing, monitoring, and managing the certification process for locomotive engineers to align with the requirements for conductors

You can read the full proposed changes at: 

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