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The Railway Association of Canada (RAC) recently announced the winners of its 2013 Environment and Safety Awards, which recognize efforts to enhance rail performance and sustainability.CN won the RAC Safety Award in the "Employee Incident" category for revitalizing a training program for new-hire conductors. The railroad implemented a modernized curriculum, introduced iPads and updated a set of learning expectations to enhance training. In addition, CN tracks the progress and proficiency of each new hire to ensure they are performing core railway activities safely and effectively. The initiative was supported by unions, CN's policy committee, employees and management, RAC officials said in a press release.Meanwhile, Canadian Pacific won the RAC Safety Award in the "Third-Party Incident" category for its Automated Train Brake Effectiveness process for coal trains. The new technology-enabled process replaces a visual air-brake test required by Transport Canada. The system's live testing function enables real-time inspection while a train is moving instead of stopped. The test has enhanced safety by improving the air-brake health of hundreds of rail cars over nearly 2,500 train cycles, RAC officials said.CP also won the RAC Environment Award for its interdisciplinary crude-oil transload team, which is charged with handling the environmental challenges associated with transporting energy products by rail. The team also is responsible for identifying sustainable opportunities, selecting business partners and planning facilities while communicating with local stakeholders. Its aim: to carry out safe and environmentally responsible operations of new crude transload facilities, RAC officials said.
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