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Rail News: Federal Legislation & Regulation

STB proposes requiring Class Is to report service performance weekly


The U.S. Surface Transportation Board (STB) yesterday issued a supplemental notice to a proposed rulemaking that would require Class Is and the Chicago Transportation Coordination Office (CTCO) to publicly file weekly data reports on service performance.

The board had required the reports to be filed on an interim basis in the wake of rail-service delays during the winter and spring of 2013-2014. In December 2014, the STB began the rulemaking process to make the performance reporting requirement permanent.

After receiving comments from the industry on the proposed rule, the board decided to waive the rules temporarily in order to allow a discussion about the proposed rules between industry representatives and the STB staff.

"These sessions allowed staff to talk candidly with railroads, shippers and other interested parties to gain additional insight into the utility of the interim reporting, to learn more about railroad data-keeping and performance measurement practices, and to discuss technical issues raised by the proposed rulemaking," STB officials said in a press release.

The regulations being proposed in the supplemental notice reflect the STB's analysis of the latest comments and discussions. The board will accept opening and replay comments on the latest proposal until May 31 and June 28, respectively.

"The railroads' reporting of service performance data on an interim basis has been very useful to the board in monitoring the industry's recovery from the severe service downturn of 2013-2014," said STB Chairman Daniel Elliott III. "It also provides us with a near real-time perspective on the pulse of the industry, and benefits rail customers and other stakeholders in the same way."

The new proposed rules will "promote transparency" and enhance the STB's ability to detect and respond to rail service problems, Elliott added.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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