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7/30/2003



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

ASLRRA forms committee to address short-line technical issues




American Short Line and Regional Railroad Association (ASLRRA) recently formed a technical committee comprising representatives from member railroads, suppliers, Federal Railroad Administration and Association of American Railroads' Transportation Technology Center Inc. (TTCI), according to ASLRRA's bi-weekly newsletter released July 29.


The committee is charged with analyzing technical issues, equipment problems or innovations that either are impacting or could impact short lines and regionals, and offering recommendations to ASLRRA members.


Although AAR's Safety Operations and Management Committee (SOMC) meets quarterly and provides recommendations on emerging technology and equipment to Class Is, the committee doesn't consider impacts on Class II and III railroads, ASLRRA officials believe.


"The fundamental problem has been that ASLRRA and many smaller railroads do not have a process or channel to provide input on SOMC matters, or on other concerns that may surface among association members," ASLRRA officials said.


Committee members include Carl Belke, general manager of fleet for Genesee & Wyoming Inc.; John Cummings, manager of communications and signals for The Indiana Rail Road Co.; Vincent Cervas, manager of short-line sales for GE Transportation Systems-Global Signaling: Richard Flynn, assistant vice president of short line and regional markets for RAILINC Corp.; Tony Habovstak, vice president of sales and marketing for Control Chief Corp.; Keith Hawthorne, vice president of technology for TTCI; Tom Howie, president of RailSoft Systems; Keith Kieres, assistant vice president of sales and technical services for The Greenbrier Cos.; Donald Plotkin, research program manager for FRA; and Matt Reilly, executive director-federal and industry programs for ASLRRA.


The committee is distributing a survey to ASLRRA members to identify primary issues and develop a priority list.



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