While New Mexico Rail Runner Express (NMRX) service remains suspended due to COVID-19, work is under way to upgrade the wireless network for its commuter rail fleet, which includes nine Wabtec-manufactured Rail Runner locomotives and nine cab cars. Positive Train Control (PTC) installation also continues.
The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) has announced that it is distributing $320.6 million to 50 projects that improve the safety, efficiency and reliability of freight rail and intercity passenger service in 29 states.
RAILWAY AGE, SEPTEMBER 2020 ISSUE: Whether it’s the track structure or the equipment that operates on it, there are many things that the naked eye cannot readily see. Increasingly, machine vision technology is becoming the best way to identify potential flaws before they lead to failures.
PART 1, THE CASE FOR SYSTEM SAFETY: Industry 4.0 (also known as the Fourth Industrial Revolution) is a reality. Railroads, including their partners in the transportation supply chain, are at the beginning of their journey to establishing true end-to-end digital continuity. For example, Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT): Positive Train Control and Enhanced Train Control; automation: autonomous inspection; AI-based automation: expanding autonomous inspection to include predictive analytics for track data. How do we know that these solutions and systems are safe and that there are no lurking issues? How do we know that the integration of multiple components from vendors, partners, and even from within meet safety objectives? How do we know if safety integrity is preserved after a change is made? How do we shift the paradigm where safety moves from a cost center to a value-added business driver? In Part I, we make the case for system safety as the necessary discipline for railroads to embed as they move forward in innovating and advancing in the 21st century.
California’s North County Transit District (NCTD) has awarded Siemens Mobility a 20-year service and parts contract for its fleet of up to nine Siemens Charger locomotives. They power COASTER regional/commuter rail between Oceanside and San Diego.
The Railway Supply Institute (RSI) has moved its 2020 education conference online. Now open to all rail industry professionals, RSI 2020 Online Education Sessions will run September 21 through October 2 and feature two to three webinars each weekday.
Three industry professionals with nearly 140 years of combined experience have joined forces at Railroad OP Services LLC, a new company whose purpose is assisting railroads with audits, rulebook updates and training to improve overall safety culture and public image, and limit financial exposure. Joe Meade and Bruce Parkin, along with company founder JD. Riley, describe themselves as “knowledgeable subject matter experts” who can provide on-site services to determine vulnerabilities, teach safety practices and prepare for Federal Railroad Administration inspections and audits.
Strato, Inc. has ranked No. 71 on business journal NJBIZ’s 2020 list of Top 250 Privately Held Companies in New Jersey.
Marybeth Luczak has returned to the Simmons-Boardman Rail Group as Executive Editor of Railway Age, effective Sept. 10, 2020.
The September 2020 issue of Railway Age is now available digitally. It includes feature stories on machine vision, top-of-rail friction management and digitalizing the Interline Settlement System, as well as a Product and Innovations Showcase spotlighting the rail supply community.