“Riding the brand”—a code of conduct exemplifying unbendable trustworthiness, integrity and commitment—is an expression as old as the Wild West, yet as contemporary as Federal Railroad Administrator Ron Batory. Nowhere is this code more needed than at the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), lacking permanent leadership since January 2015 and suffering discord and an organizational brain-drain even longer.
Federal Railroad Administration
WASHINGTON – Ronald L. Batory officially became the 14th United States Federal Railroad Administrator on February 28, 2018. In the presence of his family, and numerous colleagues he has known throughout his 47-year career as a railroader, Batory was sworn in by U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao.
The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) is accepting grant applications for projects that will strengthen rail safety efforts through the implementation of positive train control (PTC), crossing improvements and congestion mitigation.
The battle between labor and the management over mandatory two-person crews is far from over and will heat up if a new Democratic-controlled Congress takes charge in 2019. Hoping for big Democratic wins in the U.S. House and Senate later this year, railroad labor quietly continues to set the stage to push for mandatory two-person train crew legislation.
The Senate by voice vote early Tuesday evening, Feb. 13, confirmed Ronald Batory as Federal Railroad Administrator, the nation’s rail safety watchdog agency.
Heath Hall, the acting administrator of the Federal Railroad Administration, the nation’s rail safety watchdog, resigned Feb. 11 amid allegations that he was working a second job as a public relations consultant.
The Federal Railroad Administration has issued preliminary findings on the Feb. 6 incident in which an Acela Express trainset experienced a separation between two cars at a speed of approximately 125 mph.