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?
Clarify FRA's jurisdication and update definitions to align with those in 242
Update the submission process so engineer and conductor certifications have the same review board and process
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
Add two additional categories of types of service: remote control oeprators and student remote control operators
Update the individual's duty to provide data on safet conduct as motor vehicle operator and prior service on another railroad to align with 240 requirements
Update how railroads address substance abuse disorders and alcohol and drug rules compliance to align with 242
Update the training requirements to align with 242 and 243 (FRA's Training Standards Rule)
Provide clarification on testing, monitoring, and managing the certification process for locomotive engieers to align with the requirements for conductors
You can read the full proposed changes at: https://www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/FR-2019-05-09/pdf/2019-09028.pdf