I am sure many people have noticed the decline in news about freight rail accidents over the last several years. This is thanks to the extensive measures the industry has taken and is continuing to expand upon to ensure the safety of people and the products being shipped. Once again the Association of American Railroads (AAR) has written a report explaining in detail how the industry is beneficial and is taking all aspects into consideration. Safety is number one on everyone’s mind no matter the industry, but are you aware of the innovative technology that has been developed to ensure the safety of rail and everyone affected by it? Let’s take a look at what AAR has found:
1. Detecting Flaws Inside the Rails with Ultrasound Technology
This technology has been developed and used to help see what the naked eye can’t.
2. Maintaining Optimal Track Conditions
Using geometry to shape the tracks to help withstand the weight and speed of freight rail.
3. Ensuring a Solid Rail Bed Foundation
Using ground penetrating radar to check and maintain the foundation and rock bed under the track.
4. Maintaining Rail Bridges
Placing equipment on the bridges and the trains themselves to monitor the condition of the bridges and tracks.
5. Keeping Rail Wheels Turning Safely
Infra-red and acoustic technology to detect issues with wheel bearings.
6. Preventing “Truck Hunting”
Laser-based monitoring of the axle and wheel suspension assembly.
7. Alerting Engineers to Wheel Failure
Images captured by lasers to alert the engineers of a wheel needing replaced.
8. Positive Train Control (PTC)
The ability to stop a train before certain accidents occur.
9. Improved Tank Cars
The industry is fighting for stricter regulations than the government currently has in place.
10. Asset Health Strategic Initiative (AHSI)
Applies all of the information across North America so that changes and maintenance can be implemented where needed.
NMT’s sister company, GandyDancer, proudly contributes to the safety or our rail system through the SW region, by providing general maintenance, removal and upgrading of existing track, installation of new track and responding to any railroad emergencies. I encourage you to visit GandyDancer’s website to learn more.
Everything that we have written about in the last month has been to remind our current and future customers everything that the entire industry is doing to benefit our economy, our environment, our future, and our safety. We want to keep you up to date on the latest studies, which holds us accountable and gives you peace of mind.