e-CFR banner

Home
gpo.gov
govinfo.gov

e-CFR Navigation Aids

Browse

Simple Search

Advanced Search

 — Boolean

 — Proximity

 

Search History

Search Tips

Corrections

Latest Updates

User Info

FAQs

Agency List

Incorporation By Reference

eCFR logo

Related Resources

 

Electronic Code of Federal Regulations

e-CFR data is current as of December 12, 2019

Title 49Subtitle BChapter II → Part 239


Title 49: Transportation


PART 239—PASSENGER TRAIN EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS


Contents

Subpart A—General

§239.1   Purpose and scope.
§239.3   Application.
§239.5   [Reserved]
§239.7   Definitions.
§239.9   Responsibility for compliance.
§239.11   Penalties.
§239.13   Waivers.
§239.15   Information collection.

Subpart B—Specific Requirements

§239.101   Emergency preparedness plan.
§239.103   Passenger train emergency simulations.
§239.105   Debriefing and critique.
§239.107   [Reserved]

Subpart C—Review, Approval, and Retention of Emergency Preparedness Plans

§239.201   Emergency preparedness plan; filing and approval.
§239.203   Retention of emergency preparedness plan.

Subpart D—Operational Tests and Inspections; Records, Recordkeeping, and Availability of Records

§239.301   Operational tests and inspections.
§239.303   Electronic recordkeeping.

Authority: 49 U.S.C. 20102-20103, 20105-20114, 20133, 21301, 21304, and 21311; 28 U.S.C. 2461, note; and 49 CFR 1.89.

Source: 63 FR 24676, May 4, 1998, unless otherwise noted.

Subpart A—General

§239.1   Purpose and scope.

(a) The purpose of this part is to reduce the magnitude and severity of casualties in railroad operations by ensuring that railroads involved in passenger train operations can effectively and efficiently manage passenger train emergencies.

(b) This part prescribes minimum Federal safety standards for the preparation, adoption, and implementation of emergency preparedness plans by railroads connected with the operation of passenger trains, and requires each affected railroad to instruct its employees on the provisions of its plan. This part does not restrict railroads from adopting and enforcing additional or more stringent requirements not inconsistent with this part.

§239.3   Application.

(a) Except as provided in paragraph (b) of this section, this part applies to all:

(1) Railroads that operate intercity or commuter passenger train service on standard gage track which is part of the general railroad system of transportation;

(2) Railroads that provide commuter or other short-haul rail passenger train service in a metropolitan or suburban area (as described by 49 U.S.C. 20102(1)), including public authorities operating passenger train service; and

(3) Passenger or freight railroads hosting the operation of passenger train service described in paragraph (a)(1) or (a)(2) of this section.

(b) This part does not apply to:

(1) Rapid transit operations in an urban area that are not connected with the general railroad system of transportation;

(2) Operation of private cars, including business/office cars and circus trains; or

(3) Tourist, scenic, historic, or excursion operations, whether on or off the general railroad system.

§239.5   [Reserved]

§239.7   Definitions.

As used in this part—

Adjacent rail modes of transportation means other railroads, trolleys, light rail, heavy transit, and other vehicles operating on rails or electromagnetic guideways which are expressly identified in a railroad's emergency preparedness plan.

Administrator means the Administrator of the Federal Railroad Administration or the Administrator's delegate.

Control center means a central location on a railroad with responsibility for directing the safe movement of trains.

Crewmember means a person, other than a passenger, who is assigned to perform either:

(1) On-board functions connected with the movement of the train (i.e., an employee of the railroad, or of a contractor to the railroad, who is assigned to perform service subject to the Federal hours of service requirements during a tour of duty) or

(2) On-board functions in a sleeping car or coach assigned to intercity service, other than food, beverage, or security service.

Division headquarters means the location designated by the railroad where a high-level operating manager (e.g., a superintendent, division manager, or equivalent), who has jurisdiction over a portion of the railroad, has an office.

Emergency or emergency situation means an unexpected event related to the operation of passenger train service involving a significant threat to the safety or health of one or more persons requiring immediate action, including:

(1) A derailment;

(2) A fatality at a grade crossing;

(3) A passenger or employee fatality, or a serious illness or injury to one or more passengers or crewmembers requiring admission to a hospital;

(4) An evacuation of a passenger train; and

(5) A security situation (e.g., a bomb threat).

Emergency preparedness plan means one or more documents focusing on preparedness and response in dealing with a passenger train emergency.

Emergency responder, on-line emergency responder, or outside emergency responder means a member of a police or fire department, or other organization involved with public safety charged with providing or coordinating emergency services, who responds to a passenger train emergency.

Emergency response communications center means a central location, or a group of individuals, designated by a railroad with responsibility for establishing, coordinating, or maintaining communication with outside emergency responders, representatives of adjacent rail modes of transportation, or appropriate railroad officials during a passenger train emergency. The emergency response communications center may be part of the control center.

Emergency window means that segment of a side facing glazing location which has been designed to permit rapid and easy removal in an emergency situation.

FRA means the Federal Railroad Administration.

Joint operations means rail operations conducted by more than one railroad on the same track, except as necessary for the purpose of interchange, regardless of whether such operations are the result of:

(1) Contractual arrangements between the railroads;

(2) Order of a governmental agency or a court of law; or

(3) Any other legally binding directive.

Passenger train service means the transportation of persons (other than employees, contractors, or persons riding equipment to observe or monitor railroad operations) by railroad in intercity passenger service or commuter or other short-haul passenger service in a metropolitan or suburban area.

Person includes all categories of entities covered under 1 U.S.C. 1, including, but not limited to, a railroad; any manager, supervisor, official, or other employee or agent of a railroad; any owner, manufacturer, lessor, or lessee of railroad equipment, track, or facilities; any passenger; any trespasser or nontrespasser; any independent contractor providing goods or services to a railroad; any volunteer providing goods or services to a railroad; and any employee of such owner, manufacturer, lessor, lessee, or independent contractor.

Private car means a rail passenger car used to transport non-revenue passengers on an occasional contractual basis, and includes business or office cars and circus trains.

Qualified means a status attained by an employee who has successfully completed any required training for, has demonstrated proficiency in, and has been authorized by the employer to perform the duties of a particular position or function involving emergency preparedness.

Railroad means:

(1) Any form of non-highway ground transportation that runs on rails or electromagnetic guideways, including—

(i) Commuter or other short-haul rail passenger service in a metropolitan or suburban area and commuter railroad service that was operated by the Consolidated Rail Corporation on January 1, 1979, and

(ii) High speed ground transportation systems that connect metropolitan areas, without regard to whether those systems use new technologies not associated with traditional railroads, but does not include rapid transit operations in an urban area that are not connected to the general railroad system of transportation and

(2) A person that provides railroad transportation, whether directly or by contracting out operation of the railroad to another person.

Railroad officer means any supervisory employee of a railroad.

System headquarters means the location designated by the railroad as the general office for the railroad system.

[63 FR 24676, May 4, 1998, as amended at 79 FR 18147, Mar. 31, 2014]

§239.9   Responsibility for compliance.

Although the requirements of this part are stated in terms of the duty of a railroad, when any person, including a contractor to a railroad, performs any function required by this part, that person (whether or not a railroad) shall perform that function in accordance with this part.

§239.11   Penalties.

Any person who violates any requirement of this part or causes the violation of any such requirement is subject to a civil penalty of at least $892 and not more than $29,192 per violation, except that: Penalties may be assessed against individuals only for willful violations, and, where a grossly negligent violation or a pattern of repeated violations has created an imminent hazard of death or injury to persons, or has caused death or injury, a penalty not to exceed $116,766 per violation may be assessed. Each day a violation continues shall constitute a separate offense. Any person who knowingly and willfully falsifies a record or report required by this part may be subject to criminal penalties under 49 U.S.C. 21311 (formerly codified in 45 U.S.C. 438(e)). FRA's website at www.fra.dot.gov contains a schedule of civil penalty amounts used in connection with this part.

[63 FR 24676, May 4, 1998, as amended at 69 FR 30595, May 28, 2004; 72 FR 51198, Sept. 6, 2007; 73 FR 79704, Dec. 30, 2008; 77 FR 24422, Apr. 24, 2012; 81 FR 43112, July 1, 2016; 82 FR 16135, Apr. 3, 2017; 83 FR 60749, Nov. 27, 2018; 84 FR 23737, May 23, 2019; 84 FR 37075, July 31, 2019]

§239.13   Waivers.

(a) Any person subject to a requirement of this part may petition the Administrator for a waiver of compliance with such requirement. The filing of such a petition does not affect that person's responsibility for compliance with that requirement while the petition is being considered.

(b) Each petition for waiver must be filed in the manner and contain the information required by part 211 of this chapter.

(c) If the Administrator finds that a waiver of compliance is in the public interest and is consistent with railroad safety, the Administrator may grant the waiver subject to any conditions the Administrator deems necessary.

§239.15   Information collection.

(a) The information collection requirements of this part have been reviewed by the Office of Management and Budget pursuant to the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3507(d) et seq.), and have been assigned OMB control number 2130-0545.

(b) The information collection requirements are found in the following sections: §§239.101, 239.103, 239.105, 239.107, 239.201, 239.203, 239.301, and 239.303.

Subpart B—Specific Requirements

§239.101   Emergency preparedness plan.

(a) Each railroad to which this part applies shall adopt and comply with a written emergency preparedness plan approved by FRA under the procedures of §239.201. The plan shall include the following elements and procedures for implementing each plan element.

(1) Communication—(i) Initial and on-board notification. An on-board crewmember shall quickly and accurately assess the passenger train emergency situation and then notify the control center as soon as practicable by the quickest available means. As appropriate, an on-board crewmember shall inform the passengers about the nature of the emergency and indicate what corrective countermeasures are in progress.

(ii) Notification by control center or emergency response communications center. The control center or the emergency response communications center, as applicable under the plan, shall promptly notify outside emergency responders, adjacent rail modes of transportation, and appropriate railroad officials that a passenger train emergency has occurred. Each railroad shall designate an employee responsible for maintaining current emergency telephone numbers for use in making such notifications.

(2) Employee training and qualification—(i) On-board personnel. The railroad's emergency preparedness plan shall address individual employee responsibilities and provide for initial training, as well as periodic training at least once every two calendar years thereafter, on the applicable plan provisions. As a minimum, the initial and periodic training shall include:

(A) Rail equipment familiarization;

(B) Situational awareness;

(C) Passenger evacuation;

(D) Coordination of functions; and

(E) “Hands-on” instruction concerning the location, function, and operation of on-board emergency equipment.

(ii) Control center and emergency response communications center personnel. The railroad's emergency preparedness plan shall require initial training of responsible control center personnel and any emergency response communications center personnel employed by the railroad, under a contract or subcontract with the railroad, or employed by a contractor or subcontractor to the railroad, as well as periodic training at least once every two calendar years thereafter, on appropriate courses of action for each potential emergency situation under the plan. At a minimum, the initial and periodic training shall include the following:

(A) Territory familiarization (e.g., access points for emergency responders along the railroad's right-of-way; special circumstances (e.g., tunnels); parallel operations; and other operating conditions (e.g., elevated structures, bridges, and electrified territory) including areas along the railroad's right-of-way that are remote and that would likely present challenges for individuals responding to a passenger train emergency);

(B) Procedures to retrieve and communicate information to aid emergency personnel in responding to an emergency situation;

(C) Protocols governing internal communications between appropriate control center and emergency response communications center personnel whenever an imminent potential or actual emergency situation exists, as applicable under the plan; and

(D) Protocols for establishing and maintaining external communications between the railroad's control center or emergency response communications center, or both, and emergency responders and adjacent modes of transportation, as applicable under the plan.

(iii) Initial training schedule for current personnel. The railroad's emergency preparedness plan shall provide for the completion of initial training of all on-board and responsible control center personnel, as well as any emergency response communications center personnel, who are employed by the railroad, under a contract or subcontract with the railroad, or employed by a contractor or subcontractor to the railroad on the date that the plan is conditionally approved under §239.201(b)(1), in accordance with the following schedule:

(A) For each railroad that provides commuter or other short-haul passenger train service and whose operations include less than 150 route miles and less than 200 million passenger miles annually, not more than one year after January 29, 1999, or not more than 90 days after commencing passenger operations, whichever is later.

(B) For each railroad that provides commuter or other short-haul passenger train service and whose operations include at least 150 route miles or at least 200 million passenger miles annually, not more than two years after January 29, 1999, or not more than 180 days after commencing passenger operations, whichever is later.

(C) For each railroad that provides intercity passenger train service, regardless of the number of route miles or passenger miles, not more than two years after January 29, 1999, or not more than 180 days after commencing passenger operations, whichever is later.

(D) For each freight railroad that hosts passenger train service, regardless of the number of route miles or passenger miles of that service, not more than one year after January 29, 1999, or not more than 90 days after the hosting begins, whichever is later.

(iv) Initial training schedule for new personnel. The railroad's emergency preparedness plan shall provide for the completion of initial training of all on-board and responsible control center personnel, as well as any emergency response communications center personnel, who are hired by the railroad, contracted or subcontracted by the railroad, or hired by the contractor or subcontractor to the railroad after the date on which the plan is conditionally approved under §239.201(b)(1). Each of these individuals shall receive initial training within 90 days after the individual's initial date of service.

(v) Testing of on-board, control center, and emergency response communications center personnel. The railroad shall have procedures for testing an individual being evaluated for qualification under the emergency preparedness plan who is employed by the railroad, under a contract or subcontract with the railroad, or employed by a contractor or subcontractor to the railroad. The types of testing selected by the railroad shall be—

(A) Designed to accurately measure the individual's knowledge of his or her responsibilities under the plan;

(B) Objective in nature;

(C) Administered in written form; and

(D) Conducted without reference by the person being tested to open reference books or other materials, except to the degree the person is being tested on his or her ability to use such reference books or materials.

(vi) On-board staffing. (A) Except as provided in paragraph (a)(2)(vi)(B), all crewmembers on board a passenger train shall be qualified to perform the functions for which they are responsible under the provisions of the applicable emergency preparedness plan.

(B) A freight train crew relieving an expired passenger train crew en route is not required to be qualified under the emergency preparedness plan, provided that at least one member of the expired passenger train crew remains on board and is available to perform excess service under the Federal hours of service laws in the event of an emergency.

(3) Joint operations. (i) Each railroad hosting passenger train service shall address its specific responsibilities consistent with this part.

(ii) In order to achieve an optimum level of emergency preparedness, each railroad hosting passenger train service shall communicate with each railroad that provides or operates such service and coordinate applicable portions of the emergency preparedness plan. All of the railroads involved in hosting, providing, and operating a passenger train service operation shall jointly adopt one emergency preparedness plan that addresses each entity's specific responsibilities consistent with this part. Nothing in this paragraph shall restrict the ability of the railroads to provide for an appropriate assignment of responsibility for compliance with this part among those railroads through a joint operating agreement or other binding contract. However, the assignor shall not be relieved of responsibility for compliance with this part.

(4) Special circumstances—(i) Tunnels. When applicable, the railroad's emergency preparedness plan shall reflect readiness procedures designed to ensure passenger safety in an emergency situation occurring in a tunnel of 1,000 feet or more in length. The railroad's emergency preparedness plan shall address, as a minimum, availability of emergency lighting, access to emergency evacuation exits, benchwall readiness, ladders for detraining, effective radio or other communication between on-board crewmembers and the control center, and options for assistance from other trains.

(ii) Other operating considerations. When applicable, the railroad's emergency preparedness plan shall address passenger train emergency procedures involving operations on elevated structures, including drawbridges, and in electrified territory.

(iii) Parallel operations. When applicable, the railroad's emergency preparedness plan shall require reasonable and prudent action to coordinate emergency efforts where adjacent rail modes of transportation run parallel to either the passenger railroad or the railroad hosting passenger operations.

(5) Liaison with emergency responders. Each railroad to which this part applies shall establish and maintain a working relationship with the on-line emergency responders by, as a minimum:

(i) Developing and making available a training program for all on-line emergency responders who could reasonably be expected to respond during an emergency situation. The training program shall include an emphasis on access to railroad equipment, location of railroad facilities, and communications interface, and provide information to emergency responders who may not have the opportunity to participate in an emergency simulation. Each affected railroad shall either offer the training directly or provide the program information and materials to state training institutes, firefighter organizations, or police academies;

(ii) Inviting emergency responders to participate in emergency simulations; and

(iii) Distributing applicable portions of its current emergency preparedness plan at least once every three years, or whenever the railroad materially changes its plan in a manner that could reasonably be expected to affect the railroad's interface with the on-line emergency responders, whichever occurs earlier, including documentation concerning the railroad's equipment and the physical characteristics of its line, necessary maps, and the position titles and telephone numbers of relevant railroad officers to contact.

(6) On-board emergency equipment—(i) General. Each railroad's emergency preparedness plan shall state the types of emergency equipment to be kept on board and indicate their location(s) on each passenger car that is in service. Effective May 4, 1999, or not more than 120 days after commencing passenger operations, whichever is later, this equipment shall include, at a minimum:

(A) One fire extinguisher per passenger car;

(B) One pry bar per passenger car; and

(C) One flashlight per on-board crewmember.

(ii) Effective May 4, 1999, or not more than 120 days after commencing passenger operations, whichever is later, each railroad that provides intercity passenger train service shall also equip each passenger train that is in service with at least one first-aid kit accessible to crewmembers that contains, at a minimum:

(A) Two small gauze pads (at least 4 × 4 inches);

(B) Two large gauze pads (at least 8 × 10 inches);

(C) Two adhesive bandages;

(D) Two triangular bandages;

(E) One package of gauge roller bandage that is at least two inches wide;

(F) Wound cleaning agent, such as sealed moistened towelettes;

(G) One pair of scissors;

(H) One set of tweezers;

(I) One roll of adhesive tape;

(J) Two pairs of latex gloves; and

(K) One resuscitation mask.

(iii) On-board emergency lighting. Consistent with the requirements of part 238 of this chapter, auxiliary portable lighting (e.g., a handheld flashlight) must be accessible and provide, at a minimum:

(A) Brilliant illumination during the first 15 minutes after the onset of an emergency situation; and

(B) Continuous or intermittent illumination during the next 60 minutes after the onset of an emergency situation.

(iv) Maintenance. Each railroad's emergency preparedness plan shall provide for scheduled maintenance and replacement of first-aid kits, on-board emergency equipment, and on-board emergency lighting.

(7) Passenger safety information—(i) General. Each railroad's emergency preparedness plan shall provide for passenger awareness of emergency procedures, to enable passengers to respond properly during an emergency.

(ii) Passenger awareness program activities. Each railroad shall conspicuously and legibly post emergency instructions inside all passenger cars (e.g., on car bulkhead signs, seatback decals, or seat cards) and shall utilize one or more additional methods to provide safety awareness information including, but not limited to, one of the following:

(A) On-board announcements;

(B) Laminated wallet cards;

(C) Ticket envelopes;

(D) Timetables;

(E) Station signs or video monitors;

(F) Public service announcements; or

(G) Seat drops.

(8) Procedures regarding passengers with disabilities. The railroad's emergency preparedness plan shall include procedures to promote the safety of passengers with disabilities under all conditions identified in its emergency preparedness plan, such as during a train evacuation. These procedures shall include, but not be limited to, a process for notifying emergency responders in an emergency situation about the presence and general location of each such passenger when the railroad has knowledge that the passenger is on board the train. The railroad does not have knowledge that such passenger has a disability unless a crewmember has actual knowledge of the disability, such as where a passenger (or his or her companion or fellow passenger) has expressly informed a crewmember on the train of the disability or where the disability is readily apparent. Nothing in this part requires the railroad to maintain any list of train passengers.

(b) [Reserved]

[63 FR 24676, May 4, 1998, as amended at 79 FR 18147, Mar. 31, 2014]

§239.103   Passenger train emergency simulations.

(a) General. Each railroad operating passenger train service shall conduct full-scale emergency simulations, in order to determine its capability to execute the emergency preparedness plan under the variety of scenarios that could reasonably be expected to occur on its operation, and ensure coordination with all emergency responders who voluntarily agree to participate in the emergency simulations.

(b) Frequency of the emergency simulations. Except as provided in paragraph (c) of this section:

(1) Each railroad that provides commuter or other short-haul passenger train service and whose operations include less than 150 route miles and less than 200 million passenger miles annually, shall conduct a minimum of one full-scale emergency simulation during every two calendar years.

(2) Each railroad that provides commuter or other short-haul passenger train service and whose operations include at least 150 route miles or at least 200 million passenger miles annually, shall conduct a minimum of one full-scale emergency simulation during each calendar year.

(3) Each railroad that provides intercity passenger train service, shall conduct a minimum of one full-scale emergency simulation during each calendar year, regardless of the number of route miles or passenger miles.

(c) Actual emergency situations. Neither a tabletop exercise nor the activation of its emergency preparedness plan during an actual emergency situation may be credited toward the minimum number of full-scale emergency simulations required under paragraph (b) of this section. However, a railroad that has activated its emergency preparedness plan in response to a major emergency may elect to postpone a scheduled full-scale simulation for up to 180 calendar days beyond the applicable calendar year completion date in order to evaluate the effectiveness of its plan during that major emergency and, as appropriate, modify the rescheduled simulation.

(d) Definition. As used in this section, major emergency means an unexpected event related to the operation of passenger train service that results in serious injury or death to one or more persons and property damage greater than the current reporting threshold of part 225 of this chapter to railroad on-track equipment, signals, tracks, track structures, or roadbeds, including labor costs and the costs for acquiring new equipment and material.

§239.105   Debriefing and critique.

(a) General. Except as provided in paragraph (b) of this section, each railroad operating passenger train service shall conduct a debriefing and critique session after each passenger train emergency situation or full-scale simulation to determine the effectiveness of its emergency preparedness plan, and shall improve or amend its plan, or both, as appropriate, in accordance with the information developed. The debriefing and critique session shall be conducted within 60 days of the date of the passenger train emergency situation or full-scale simulation. To the extent practicable, all on-board personnel, control center personnel, and any other employees involved in the emergency situation or full-scale simulation shall participate in the session either:

(1) In person;

(2) Offsite via teleconference; or

(3) In writing, by a statement responding to questions provided prior to the session, and by responding to any follow-up questions.

(b) Exceptions. (1) No debriefing and critique session shall be required in the case of an emergency situation involving only a collision between passenger railroad rolling stock and: a pedestrian; a trespasser; or a motor vehicle or other highway conveyance at a highway-rail grade crossing, provided that the collision does not result in: a passenger or employee fatality, or an injury to one or more crewmembers or passengers requiring admission to a hospital; or the evacuation of a passenger train. (2) For purposes of this section, highway-rail grade crossing means a location where a public highway, road, street, or private roadway, including associated sidewalks and pathways, crosses one or more railroad tracks at grade, and trespasser means a person who is on that part of railroad property used in railroad operation and whose presence is prohibited, forbidden, or unlawful.

(c) Purpose of debriefing and critique. The debriefing and critique session shall be designed to determine, at a minimum:

(1) Whether the on-board communications equipment functioned properly;

(2) How much time elapsed between the occurrence of the emergency situation or full-scale simulation and notification to the emergency responders involved;

(3) Whether the control center or the emergency response communications center promptly initiated the required notifications, as applicable under the plan;

(4) How quickly and effectively the emergency responders responded after notification; and

(5) How efficiently the passengers exited from the car through the emergency exits, including any passengers with a disability or injury (when the railroad has knowledge of any such passengers).

(d) Records. (1) Each railroad shall maintain records of its debriefing and critique sessions at its system headquarters and applicable division headquarters for two calendar years after the end of the calendar year to which they relate, including the following information:

(i) Date and location of the passenger train emergency situation or full-scale simulation;

(ii) Date and location of the debriefing and critique session; and

(iii) Names of all participants in the debriefing and critique session.

(2) These records shall be made available to representatives of FRA and States participating under part 212 of this chapter for inspection and copying during normal business hours.

[63 FR 24676, May 4, 1998, as amended at 78 FR 71816, Nov. 29, 2013; 79 FR 18148, Mar. 31, 2014]

§239.107   [Reserved]

Subpart C—Review, Approval, and Retention of Emergency Preparedness Plans

§239.201   Emergency preparedness plan; filing and approval.

(a) Filing of plan and amendments—(1) Filing of plan. Each passenger railroad to which this part applies and all railroads hosting its passenger train service (if applicable) shall jointly adopt a single emergency preparedness plan for that service, and the passenger railroad shall file one copy of that plan with the Associate Administrator for Railroad Safety and Chief Safety Officer, Federal Railroad Administration, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Mail Stop 25, Washington, DC 20590, not less than 60 days prior to commencing passenger operations. Any passenger railroad that has an emergency preparedness plan approved by FRA as of July 29, 2014, is considered to have timely filed its plan. The emergency preparedness plan shall include the name, title, address (street address and, if available, email address), and telephone number of the primary person on each affected railroad to be contacted with regard to review of the plan, and shall include a summary of each railroad's analysis supporting each plan element and describing how every condition on the railroad's property that is likely to affect emergency response is addressed in the plan.

(2) Filing of amendments to the plan. (i) Except as provided in paragraph (a)(2)(ii) of this section, each subsequent amendment to a railroad's emergency preparedness plan shall be filed with FRA by the passenger railroad not less than 60 days prior to the proposed effective date of the amendment. When filing an amendment, the railroad must include a written summary of the proposed changes to the previously approved plan and, as applicable, a training plan describing how and when current and new employees and others within the scope of the training requirement at §239.101(a)(2) would be trained on any amendment.

(ii) If the proposed amendment is limited to adding or changing the name, title, street address, email address, or telephone number of the primary person to be contacted on each affected railroad with regard to the review of the plan, approval is not required under the process in paragraph (b)(3)(i) of this section. These proposed amendments may be implemented by the railroad upon filing with FRA's Associate Administrator for Railroad Safety and Chief Safety Officer. All other proposed amendments must comply with the formal approval process in paragraph (b)(3)(i) of this section.

(b) Approval—(1) Preliminary review. (i) Within 90 days of receipt of each proposed emergency preparedness plan, and within 45 days of receipt of each plan for passenger operations to be commenced after the initial deadline for plan submissions, FRA will conduct a preliminary review of the proposed plan to determine if the elements prescribed in §239.101 are sufficiently addressed and discussed in the railroad's plan submission. FRA will then notify the primary contact person of each affected railroad in writing of the results of the review, whether the proposed plan has been conditionally approved by FRA, and if not conditionally approved, the specific points in which the plan is deficient.

(ii) If a proposed emergency preparedness plan is not conditionally approved by FRA, the affected railroad or railroads shall amend the proposed plan to correct all deficiencies identified by FRA (and provide FRA with a corrected copy) not later than 30 days following receipt of FRA's written notice that the proposed plan was not conditionally approved.

(2) Final review. (i) Within 18 months of receipt of each proposed plan, and within 180 days of receipt of each proposed plan for passenger operations to be commenced after the initial deadline for plan submissions, FRA will conduct a comprehensive review of the conditionally approved plan to evaluate implementation of the elements included. This review will include ongoing dialogues with rail management and labor representatives, and field analysis and verification. FRA will then notify the primary contact person of each affected railroad in writing of the results of the review, whether the conditionally approved plan has been finally approved by FRA, and if not approved, the specific points in which the plan is deficient.

(ii) If an emergency preparedness plan of a railroad or railroads is not finally approved by FRA, the affected railroad or railroads shall amend the plan to correct all deficiencies (and provide FRA with a corrected copy) not later than 30 days following receipt of FRA's written notice that the plan was not finally approved.

(3) Review of amendments. (i) Except as provided in paragraph (a)(2)(ii) of this section, FRA will normally review each proposed plan amendment within 45 days of receipt. FRA will then notify the primary contact person of each affected railroad of the results of the review, whether the proposed amendment has been approved by FRA, and if not approved, the specific points in which the proposed amendment is deficient.

(ii) If the amendment is not approved, the railroad shall correct any deficiencies identified by FRA and file the corrected amendment prior to implementing the amendment.

(4) Reopened review. Following initial approval of a plan, or amendment, FRA may reopen consideration of the plan, or amendment, for cause stated.

[63 FR 24676, May 4, 1998, as amended at 74 FR 25175, May 27, 2009; 79 FR 18148, Mar. 31, 2014]

§239.203   Retention of emergency preparedness plan.

Each passenger railroad to which this part applies, and all railroads hosting its passenger train service (if applicable), shall each retain one copy of the emergency preparedness plan required by §239.201 and one copy of each subsequent amendment to that plan at the system and division headquarters of each, and shall make such records available to representatives of FRA and States participating under part 212 of this chapter for inspection and copying during normal business hours.

Subpart D—Operational Tests and Inspections; Records, Recordkeeping, and Availability of Records

§239.301   Operational tests and inspections.

(a) Requirement to conduct operational tests and inspections. Each railroad to which this part applies shall periodically conduct operational tests and inspections of on-board personnel, responsible control center personnel, and, as applicable, emergency response communications center personnel employed by the railroad, under a contract or subcontract with the railroad, or employed by a contractor or subcontractor to the railroad, to determine the extent of compliance with its emergency preparedness plan.

(1) Program of operational tests and inspections. Operational tests and inspections shall be conducted in accordance with the railroad's program. A new railroad shall adopt such a program within 30 days of commencing rail operations. The program shall—

(i) Provide for operational testing and inspection on appropriate courses of action in response to various potential emergency situations and on the responsibilities of an employee of the railroad, of an individual who is a contractor or subcontractor to the railroad, or an employee of a contractor of subcontractor to the railroad, as they relate to the railroad's emergency preparedness plan.

(ii) Describe each type of operational test and inspection required, including the means and procedures used to carry it out.

(iii) State the purpose of each type of operational test and inspection.

(iv) State, according to operating divisions where applicable, the frequency with which each type of operational test and inspection is to be conducted.

(v) Identify the officer(s) by name, job title, and division or system, who shall be responsible for ensuring that the program of operational tests and inspections is properly implemented. A railroad with operating divisions shall identify at least one officer at the system headquarters who is responsible for overseeing the entire program and the implementation by each division.

(vi) Require that each railroad officer who conducts operational tests and inspections be trained on those aspects of the railroad's emergency preparedness plan that are relevant to the operational tests and inspections that the officer conducts, and that the officer be qualified on the procedures for conducting such operational tests and inspections in accordance with the railroad's program of operational tests and inspections and the requirements of this section.

(2) The program of operational tests and inspections required by paragraph (a)(1) of this section may be combined with the written program of operational tests and inspections required by §217.9(c) of this chapter.

(b) Maintaining records of operational tests and inspections. Each railroad to which this part applies shall maintain a record of the date, time, place, and result of each operational test and inspection that was performed in accordance with paragraph (a) of this section. Each record shall also specify the name of the railroad officer who administered the test or inspection, the name of each employee tested, and sufficient information to identify the relevant facts relied on for evaluation purposes.

(c) Retaining operational test and inspection records. Each record required by paragraph (b) of this section shall be retained at the system headquarters of the railroad and, as applicable, at the division headquarters for the division where the test or inspection was conducted, for one calendar year after the end of the calendar year to which the test or inspection relates. Each such record shall be retained either in hard copy or electronically, if pursuant to §239.303, and shall be made available to representatives of FRA and States participating under part 212 of this chapter for inspection and copying during normal business hours.

(d) Retaining records of program of operational tests and inspections. Each railroad shall retain one copy of its current operational testing and inspection program required by paragraph (a) of this section and one copy of each subsequent amendment to such program. These records shall be retained at the system headquarters, and, as applicable, at each division headquarters where the operational tests and inspections are conducted, for three calendar years after the end of the calendar year to which they relate. These records shall be retained either in hard copy or electronically, if pursuant to §239.303, and shall be made available to representatives of FRA and States participating under part 212 of this chapter for inspection and copying during normal business hours.

(e) Six-month review of tests and inspections and adjustments to the program of operational tests and inspections. Not less than once every six months, the officer(s) responsible for overseeing the entire program of operational tests and inspections under this section and the implementation of the program by each division, if any, or the system, as designated pursuant to paragraph (a)(1)(v) of this section, shall conduct periodic reviews and analyses as provided in this paragraph, prepare records of reviews as provided in this paragraph, and retain one copy of these records at the system headquarters, and, as applicable, at each division headquarters. Each such review and record shall be completed within 30 days of the close of the period being reviewed. The record of each such review shall be retained (in hard copy or electronically, if pursuant to §239.303) for a period of one year after the end of the calendar year to which the review relates, and be made available to representatives of FRA for inspection and copying during normal business hours. In particular, each designated officer's review and record shall include the following:

(1) The operational testing and inspection data for each division, if any, or the system to determine compliance by the railroad testing officers with its program of operational tests and inspections required by paragraph (a)(1) of this section. At a minimum, this review shall include the name of each railroad testing officer, the number of tests and inspections conducted by each officer, and whether the officer conducted the minimum number of each type of test or inspection required by the railroad's program;

(2) Accident/incident data, the results of prior operational tests and inspections under this section, and other pertinent safety data for each division, if any, or the system to identify the relevant operating rules related to those accidents/incidents that occurred during the period. Based upon the results of that review of the data for each division, if any, or the system, the designated officer(s) shall make any necessary adjustments to the tests and inspections required of railroad officers for the subsequent period(s); and

(3) Implementation of the program of operational tests and inspections under this section from a system perspective, to ensure that the program is being utilized as intended, that the other reviews provided for in this paragraph have been properly completed, that appropriate adjustments have been made to the distribution of tests and inspections required, and that the railroad testing officers are appropriately directing their efforts.

(f) Annual summary of operational tests and inspections. Before March 1 of each calendar year, each railroad to which this part applies shall prepare and retain at the system headquarters of the railroad and, as applicable, at each of its division headquarters, one copy of a summary of the following with respect to its previous calendar year activities: The number, type, and result of each operational test and inspection, stated according to operating divisions as applicable, that was conducted as required by paragraph (a) of this section. A record of each such summary shall be retained (in hard copy or electronically, if pursuant to §239.303) for three calendar years after the end of the calendar year to which the record relates and shall be made available to representatives of FRA and States participating under part 212 of this chapter for inspection and copying during normal business hours.

[79 FR 18149, Mar. 31, 2014]

§239.303   Electronic recordkeeping.

Each railroad to which this part applies is authorized to retain by electronic recordkeeping the information prescribed in §239.301, provided that all of the following conditions are met:

(a) The railroad adequately limits and controls accessibility to such information retained in its database system and identifies those individuals who have such access;

(b) The railroad has a terminal at the system headquarters and at each division headquarters;

(c) Each such terminal has a desk-top computer (i.e., monitor, central processing unit, and keyboard) and either a facsimile machine or a printer connected to the computer to retrieve and produce information in a usable format for immediate review by representatives of FRA and States participating under part 212 of this chapter;

(d) The railroad has a designated representative who is authorized to authenticate retrieved information from the electronic system as true and accurate copies of the electronically kept records; and

(e) The railroad provides representatives of FRA and States participating under part 212 of this chapter with immediate access to these records for inspection and copying during normal business hours and provides printouts of such records upon request.

Need assistance?