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Rail News: Federal Legislation & Regulation

FRA allows small railroads to automate hours-of-service records

Ronald Batory is the federal railroad administrator.
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The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) has issued a final rule to allow eligible smaller railroads and their contractors to use automated systems instead of paper records to comply with federal employee hours-of-service recordkeeping requirements.

The rule, which takes effect today, is part of the FRA's broader effort to reduce the paperwork burden of its regulations, according to a notice published in the Federal Register.

It does not require eligible short lines and other railroads to use automated systems, however.

"This rule allows a railroad with less than 400,000 employee-hours annually (an eligible smaller railroad), and contractors and subcontractors that provide covered service employees to that railroad, to have employees electronically sign the automated records of their hours of duty to store the records in the railroad's computer system," the rule states. "Thus, this rule eliminates the requirement to print and sign the record."

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More News from 8/29/2018