Freeman to Join Loram Board

Rail industry vet David Freeman is joining Loram Holdings Inc.’s Board of Directors. Freeman’s background includes 19 years of rail industry experience in engineering and operations roles with BNSF Railway.

FRA to Administer $248.5MM in Grants

U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao announced the recipients of $248.5 million in grant funds under the Consolidated Rail Infrastructure and Safety Improvements (CRISI) Program, for a wide variety of state and local railroad infrastructure projects. The grants will fund 32 projects in 27 states, and will be administered by the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA).

S-B Rail Group Staff Report: UPDATED MARCH 30—Global Railway Industry Response & Impacts, COVID-19 Pandemic

The World Health Organization has declared COVID-19, otherwise known as the coronavirus, a pandemic, and the U.S. has declared a National Emergency. The global railway industry has been responding. Following is a staff report from the editors at Railway Age, Railway Track & Structures and International Railway Journal that will be continuously updated with the latest developments, the most significant posted up top.

Ties That Bind

RAILWAY AGE, MARCH 2020 ISSUE: Transferring loads to track ballast and subgrade and helping maintain track geometry and gauge, crossties are the foundation of a railroad.

Big Data Journey: From Collection to Analysis to Predictive Use

RAILWAY AGE, MARCH 2020 ISSUE: The December 2019 Big Data in Railroad Maintenance Planning Conference, held at the University of Delaware, continued to highlight the advances the railroad industry is making in addressing the growing volume of data from inspection and other systems, and learning how to apply it. This was clearly shown in the keynote address, where the keynote speaker, Jeffrey D. Knueppel, P.E., now retired as General Manager of Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) presented how his agency is already using a range of data collection, data analysis and data management tools in the everyday running of SEPTA. In fact, he titled his presentation “SEPTA’s Journey Into Big Data” and presented a range of Big Data applications that are currently implemented or being implemented on SEPTA.

NS Debuts Locomotive-Mounted Autonomous Track Inspection Technology

Norfolk Southern (NS) announced that it has achieved a breakthrough in track inspection technology that will enhance railroad safety and operating efficiencies.

BNSF Breaks Ground for Second Sandpoint Bridge

The first signs of physical progress have been made in BNSF Railway’s long-awaited plan to build a second bridge, nearly a mile in length, running parallel to its existing bridge across Lake Pend Oreille near Sandpoint, Idaho. Preliminary grading began in September 2019 on both sides of the lake to prepare the approaches to the new bridge. Within the city of Sandpoint itself, grade work has included the construction of a pedestrian tunnel—paid for by BNSF—which will safely maintain public access through railroad property to a popular beach and lakeside trail.

Possible COVID-19 Impacts, North American Freight Railroads

Wide-scale spread of the COVID-19 virus (Coronavirus) is very real. Cases reported outside China recently exceeded new cases reported inside China, a possible tipping point. What could the implications be for North American freight railroads?

RECo Marks 40th Anniversary

Railway Equipment Company (RECo) in 2020 is marking 40 years in business. “Since our humble beginnings in 1980 developing switch heaters for local Minneapolis railroads to innovating crossing gate arms and lamps for the industry, RECo has lead the charge in developing new technology,” Chief Operating Officer Russ Gehl notes.


Conrail plays a critical role in providing its owners, Class I giants CSX Transportation and Norfolk Southern, safe and efficient rail service. Conrail turned to NARSTCO steel turnouts for their lower installation costs, reduced maintenance needs and longer in-service life.