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Safety Recommendation Details

Safety Recommendation R-02-010
Synopsis: These recommendations address (1) the determination and designation of maximum authorized train speeds with sufficient safety margins to ensure that a train can be stopped by the air brake system alone, and (2) locomotive engineer support and training. The recommendations are derived from the Safety Board's investigation of the January 30, 2000, derailment of CSX Transportation (CSXT) coal train V986-26 near Bloomington, Maryland, and are consistent with the evidence we found and the analysis we performed. As a result of this investigation, the Safety Board has issued five safety recommendations, three of which are addressed specifically to CSXT, and two of which are addressed to all class I railroads, including CSXT. Information supporting the recommendations is discussed below. The Safety Board would appreciate a response from you within 90 days addressing the actions you have taken or intend to take to implement our recommendations.
Recommendation: The NTSB recommends that CSX Transportation, Inc.: Modify CSX Transportation Rule 3.3.7, Speed Control on Descending Grade, Paragraph C, "Use of Power on Heavy Descending Grades," to impose a speed limit in addition to the maximum distance and brake pipe reduction currently imposed to prevent excessive heat generation, heat fade, and loss of braking ability.
Original recommendation transmittal letter: PDF
Overall Status: Closed - Acceptable Action
Mode: Railroad
Location: Bloomington, MD, United States
Is Reiterated: No
Is Hazmat: No
Accident #: ATL00FR003
Accident Reports: Derailment of CSX Transportation Coal Train V986-26
Report #: RAR-02-02
Accident Date: 1/30/2000
Issue Date: 3/21/2002
Date Closed: 8/26/2002
Addressee(s) and Addressee Status: CSX Transportation, Inc. (Closed - Acceptable Action)

Safety Recommendation History
From: NTSB
To: CSX Transportation, Inc.
Date: 8/26/2002
Response: CSXT indicates that it has modified its rule (now renumbered as Rule 5559, Steep Grade [1% or more] Train Handling) to read "Do not pull a train for more than 2 miles if the brake pipe reduction is 18 PSI or more. Under no circumstances should the speed exceed 20 mph." As these changes satisfy the recommendation, Safety Recommendation R-02-10 is classified "Closed--Acceptable Action."

From: CSX Transportation, Inc.
Date: 5/6/2002
Response: Letter Mail Controlled 05/20/2002 7:47:49 PM MC# 2020526 CSX has modified the Air Brake and Train Handling Rule Book. Rule 3.3 7 has been renumbered and is currently referred to as Rule 5559, Steep Grade (1% or more) Train Handling, 1. Descending Steep Grades bullet point 3 has been modified to read " Do not pull a train for more than 2 miles if the brake pipe reduction is 18 PSI or more. Under no circumstances should the speed exceed 20 mph.