GATX, Amtrak host railcar safety training sessions

Written by Carolina Worrell, Senior Editor

GATX Corporation, in partnership with Amtrak and the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments, hosted railcar safety training sessions using its TankTrainer™ and Classroom Boxcar at Union Station in Washington, D.C. from April 12-15, 2016.


During the four-day event, GATX provided tank car training to more than 100 first responders and Amtrak employees. In addition, members of the U.S. Congress and their staffs, and many others from across the rail industry toured the TankTrainer™ and received information on tank car safety from GATX’s training team.

As the leading global railcar lessor, GATX Corporation says it is committed to safety and environmental responsibility. Providing hands-on training in the proper use and handling of railcars for customers, rail industry participants, and first responders is one way GATX addresses this commitment.

GATX’s TankTrainer™ is a 33,500-gallon tank car outfitted with a variety of fittings, coatings and configurations that provides trainees with the opportunity to access both the interior and exterior of a railcar for a hands-on experience. The Classroom Boxcar is a training room for instruction provided by experienced GATX personnel.

The industry can proudly report that 99.99% of hazardous material arrives safely, according to the Association of American Railroads, but “when emergency situations happen, first response is so critical,” said George Biggs, the TankTrainer expert on-site in D.C. and Senior Rail Car Design Engineer at GATX.  “A lot of problems are preventable,” he said from inside the training car that has hosted more than 21,000 trainees to date, “and we believe there’s no better way to explain that than with hands-on training.” 

“We were pleased to bring the GATX TankTrainer™ to Washington, D.C.,” said Brian Kenney, President and CEO of GATX Corporation. “We have offered the TankTrainer™ program since 1993. This is one of the many ways we strive to continually improve the safe operation of our railcars.”

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