$2.4M FRA safety grant for short lines

Written by Stuart Chirls, Senior Editor
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Proving grant funding isn’t just for infrastructure, an industry support organization will get a large check to help improve safety.

The Short Line Safety Institute (SLSI) has received a $2.4 million grant from the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) enabling the SLSI to continue its mission to enhance and improve safety practices, and to increase the short line and regional railroad industry’s culture of commitment to safety.

“To date, we have impacted more than 5,800 railroaders with our programming,” said Tom Murta, Executive Director, SLSI. “The SLSI will have completed 64 Safety Culture Assessments by the end of this calendar year, with nine already scheduled in 2019, and offered numerous training opportunities through webinars and at regional meetings. This funding will allow us to develop and launch new programming to assist short line and regional railroads in filling the opportunity gaps identified through our ongoing Safety Culture Assessments conducted on short line and regional railroads.”

The fiscal 2018 funding will enable the SLSI to develop new training programs. Currently under development, scheduled for roll out in 2019, is a program for Professional Development. This program will help address an identified need for a formalized management training program on small railroads, including soft skills to assist with coaching employees, and correcting behavior that can impact safety on a railroad.

The funding will also allow the SLSI to continue to provide Safety Culture Assessments, webinar training, in-person trainings, and other resource material such as downloadable Safety Tips for use in daily Safety Briefings at no cost to the short line industry.

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