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[Code of Federal Regulations]
[Title 49, Volume 4]
[Revised as of October 1, 2003]
[CITE: 49CFR218]

[Page 193-207]
 

TITLE 49--TRANSPORTATION
CHAPTER II--FEDERAL RAILROAD ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
PART 218--RAILROAD OPERATING PRACTICES


                           Subpart A--General

Sec.
218.1 Purpose.
218.3 Application.
218.5 Definitions.
218.7 Waivers.
218.9 Civil penalty.
218.11 Filing, testing, and instruction.

[[Page 194]]

              Subpart B--Blue Signal Protection of Workers

218.21 Scope.
218.22 Utility employee.
218.23 Blue signal display.
218.24 One-person crew.
218.25 Workers on a main track.
218.27 Workers on track other than main track.
218.29 Alternate methods of protection.
218.30 Remotely controlled switches.

             Subpart C--Protection of Trains and Locomotives

218.31 Scope.
218.35 Yard limits.
218.37 Flag protection.
218.39 Hump operations.
218.41 Noncompliance with hump operations rule.

      Subpart D--Prohibition Against Tampering With Safety Devices

218.51 Purpose.
218.53 Scope and definitions.
218.55 Tampering prohibited.
218.57 Responsibilities of individuals.
218.59 Responsibilities of railroads.
218.61 Authority to deactivate safety devices.

               Subpart E--Protection of Occupied Camp Cars

218.71 Purpose and scope.
218.73 Warning signal display.
218.75 Methods of protection for camp cars.
218.77 Remotely controlled switches.
218.79 Alternative methods of protection.
218.80 Movement of occupied camp cars.

Appendix A to Part 218--Schedule of Civil Penalties
Appendix B to Part 218--Statement of Agency Enforcement Policy on Blue 
          Signal Protection for Utility Employees
Appendix C to Part 218--Statement of Agency Enforcement Policy on 
          Tampering

    Authority: 49 U.S.C. 20103, 20107 and 49 CFR 1.49.

    Source: 44 FR 2175, Jan. 10, 1979, unless otherwise noted.

    Editorial Note: Nomenclature changes to part 218 appear at 58 FR 
43292, Aug. 16, 1993.

                           Subpart A--General

Sec. 218.1  Purpose.

    This part prescribes minimum requirements for railroad operating 
rules and practices. Each railroad may prescribe additional or more 
stringent requirements in its operating rules, timetables, timetable 
special instructions, and other special instructions.

Sec. 218.3  Application.

    (a) Except as provided in paragraph (b) of this section, this part 
applies to railroads that operate rolling equipment on standard gage 
track which is part of the general railroad system of transportation.
    (b) This part does not apply to--
    (1) A railroad that operates only on track inside an installation 
which is not part of the general railroad system of transportation, or
    (2) Rapid transit operations in an urban area that are not connected 
with the general railroad system of transportation.

[44 FR 2175, Jan. 10, 1979, as amended at 53 FR 28599, July 28, 1988]

Sec. 218.5  Definitions.

    Absolute block means a block in which no train is permitted to enter 
while it is occupied by another train.
    Blue signal means a clearly distinguishable blue flag or blue light 
by day and a blue light at night. When attached to the operating 
controls of a locomotive, it need not be lighted if the inside of the 
cab area of the locomotive is sufficiently lighted so as to make the 
blue signal clearly distinguishable.
    Camp car means any on-track vehicle, including outfit, camp, or bunk 
cars or modular homes mounted on flat cars used to house rail employees. 
It does not include wreck trains.
    Car shop repair track area means one or more tracks within an area 
in which the testing, servicing, repair, inspection, or rebuilding of 
railroad rolling equipment is under the exclusive control of mechanical 
department personnel.
    Controlling Locomotive means a locomotive arranged as having the 
only controls over all electrical, mechanical and pneumatic functions 
for one or more locomotives, including controls transmitted by radio 
signals if so equipped. It does not include two or more locomotives 
coupled in multiple

[[Page 195]]

which can be moved from more than one set of locomotive controls.
    Designated crew member means an individual designated under the 
railroad's operating rules as the point of contact between a train or 
yard crew and a utility employee working with that crew.
    Effective locking device when used in relation to a manually 
operated switch or a derail means one which is:
    (1) Vandal resistant;
    (2) Tamper resistant; and
    (3) Capable of being locked and unlocked only by the class, craft or 
group of employees for whom the protection is being provided.
    Flagman's signals means a red flag by day and a white light at 
night, and a specified number of torpedoes and fusees as prescribed in 
the railroad's operating rules.
    Group of workers means two or more workers of the same or different 
crafts assigned to work together as a unit under a common authority and 
who are in communication with each other while the work is being done.
    Interlocking limits means the tracks between the opposing home 
signals of an interlocking.
    Locomotive means a self-propelled unit of equipment designed for 
moving other railroad rolling equipment in revenue service including a 
self-propelled unit designed to carry freight or passenger traffic, or 
both, and may consist of one or more units operated from a single 
control.
    Locomotive servicing track area means one or more tracks, within an 
area in which the testing, servicing, repair, inspection, or rebuilding 
of locomotives is under the exclusive control of mechanical department 
personnel.
    Main track means a track, other than an auxiliary track, extending 
through yards or between stations, upon which trains are operated by 
timetable or train order or both, or the use of which is governed by a 
signal system.
    Rolling equipment includes locomotives, railroad cars, and one or 
more locomotives coupled to one or more cars.
    Switch providing access means a switch which if traversed by rolling 
equipment could permit that rolling equipment to couple to the equipment 
being protected.
    Train or yard crew means one or more railroad employees assigned a 
controlling locomotive, under the charge and control of one crew member; 
called to perform service covered by Section 2 of the Hours of Service 
Act; involved with the train or yard movement of railroad rolling 
equipment they are to work with as an operating crew; reporting and 
working together as a unit that remains in close contact if more than 
one employee; and subject to the railroad operating rules and program of 
operational tests and inspections required in Secs. 217.9 and 217.11 of 
this chapter.
    Utility employee means a railroad employee assigned to and 
functioning as a temporary member of a train or yard crew whose primary 
function is to assist the train or yard crew in the assembly, 
disassembly or classification of rail cars, or operation of trains 
(subject to the conditions set forth in Sec. 218.22 of this chapter).
    Worker means any railroad employee assigned to inspect, test, 
repair, or service railroad rolling equipment, or their components, 
including brake systems. Members of train and yard crews are excluded 
except when assigned such work on railroad rolling equipment that is not 
part of the train or yard movement they have been called to operate (or 
been assigned to as ``utility employees''). Utility employees assigned 
to and functioning as temporary members of a specific train or yard crew 
(subject to the conditions set forth in Sec. 218.22 of this chapter), 
are excluded only when so assigned and functioning.

    Note: Servicing does not include supplying cabooses, locomotives, or 
passenger cars with items such as ice, drinking water, tools, sanitary 
supplies, stationery, or flagging equipment.

    Testing does not include (i) visual observations made by an employee 
positioned on or alongside a caboose, locomotive, or passenger car; or 
(ii) marker inspections made in accordance with the provisions of 
Sec. 221.16(b) of this chapter.

[58 FR 43292, Aug. 16, 1993, as amended at 60 FR 11049, Mar. 1, 1995]

[[Page 196]]

Sec. 218.7  Waivers.

    (a) A railroad may petition the Federal Railroad Administration for 
a waiver of compliance with any requirement prescribed in this part.
    (b) Each petition for a waiver under this section must be filed in 
the manner and contain the information required by part 211 of this 
chapter.
    (c) If the Administrator finds that waiver of compliance is in the 
public interest and is consistent with railroad safety, he may grant the 
waiver subject to any conditions he deems necessary. Notice of each 
waiver granted, including a statement of the reasons, therefore, is 
published in the Federal Register.

Sec. 218.9  Civil penalty.

    Any person (an entity of any type covered under 1 U.S.C. 1, 
including but not limited to the following: a railroad; a manager, 
supervisor, official, or other employee or agent of a railroad; any 
owner, manufacturer, lessor, or lessee of railroad equipment, track, or 
facilities; any independent contractor providing goods or services to a 
railroad; and any employee of such owner, manufacturer, lessor, lessee, 
or independent contractor) who violates any requirement of this part or 
causes the violation of any such requirement is subject to a civil 
penalty of at least $500 and not more than $11,000 per violation, except 
that: Penalties may be assessed against individuals only for willful 
violations, and, where a grossly negligent violation or a pattern of 
repeated violations has created an imminent hazard of death or injury to 
persons, or has caused death or injury, a penalty not to exceed $22,000 
per violation may be assessed. Each day a violation continues shall 
constitute a separate offense. See appendix A to this part for a 
statement of agency civil penalty policy.

[53 FR 28599, July 28, 1988, as amended at 53 FR 52928, Dec. 29, 1988; 
63 FR 11621, Mar. 10, 1998]

Sec. 218.11  Filing, testing, and instruction.

    The operating rules prescribed in this part, and any additional or 
more stringent requirements issued by a railroad in relation to the 
operating rules prescribed in this part, shall be subject to the 
provisions of part 217 of this chapter, Railroad Operating Rules: 
Filing, Testing, and Instruction.

              Subpart B--Blue Signal Protection of Workers

Sec. 218.21  Scope.

    This subpart prescribes minimum requirements for the protection of 
railroad employees engaged in the inspection, testing, repair, and 
servicing of rolling equipment whose activities require them to work on, 
under, or between such equipment and subjects them to the danger of 
personal injury posed by any movement of such equipment.

Sec. 218.22  Utility employee.

    (a) A utility employee shall be subject to the Hours of Service Act, 
and the requirements for training and testing, control of alcohol and 
drug use, and hours of service record keeping provided for in parts 217, 
219, and 228 of this chapter.
    (b) A utility employee shall perform service as a member of only one 
train or yard crew at any given time. Service with more than one crew 
may be sequential, but not concurrent.
    (c) A utility employee may be assigned to and serve as a member of a 
train or yard crew without the protection otherwise required by subpart 
D of part 218 of this chapter only under the following conditions:
    (1) The train or yard crew is assigned a controlling locomotive that 
is under the actual control of the assigned locomotive engineer of that 
crew;
    (2) The locomotive engineer is in the cab of the controlling 
locomotive, or, while the locomotive is stationary be replaced in the 
cab by another member of the same crew;
    (3) The utility employee established communication with the crew by 
contacting the designated crew member on arriving at the train (as 
defined for the purpose of this section as one or more locomotives 
coupled, with or without cars) and before commencing any duties with the 
crew.
    (4) Before each utility employee commences duties, the designated 
crew

[[Page 197]]

member shall provide notice to each crew member of the presence and 
identity of the utility employee. Once all crew members have 
acknowledged this notice, the designated crew member shall advise the 
utility employee that he or she is authorized to work as part of the 
crew. Thereafter, communication shall be maintained in such a manner 
that each member of the train or yard crew understands the duties to be 
performed and whether those duties will cause any crew member to go on, 
under, or between the rolling equipment; and
    (5) The utility employee is performing one or more of the following 
functions: set or release hand brakes; couple or uncouple air hoses and 
other electrical or mechanical connections; prepare rail cars for 
coupling; set wheel blocks or wheel chains; conduct air brake tests to 
include cutting air brake components in or out and position retaining 
valves; inspect, test, install, remove or replace a rear end marking 
device or end of train device. Under all other circumstances a utility 
employee working on, under, or between railroad rolling equipment must 
be provided with blue signal protection in accordance with Secs. 218.23 
through 218.30 of this part.
    (d) When the utility employee has ceased all work in connection with 
that train and is no longer on, under, or between the equipment, the 
utility employee shall notify the designated crew member. The designated 
crew member shall then provide notice to each crew member that the 
utility employee is being released from the crew. Once each crew member 
has acknowledged the notice, the designated crew member shall then 
notify the utility employee that he is released from the train or yard 
crew.
    (e) Communications required by Sec. 218.22(c)(4) and (d) shall be 
conducted between the utility employee and the designated crew member. 
This communications shall be conducted either through direct verbal 
contact, by radio in compliance with part 220 of this chapter, or by 
oral telecommunication of equivalent integrity.
    (f) No more than three utility employees may be attached to one 
train or yard crew at any given time.
    (g) Any railroad employee who is not assigned to a train or yard 
crew, or authorized to work with a crew under the conditions set forth 
by paragraph (b) of this section, is a worker required to be provided 
blue signal protection in accordance with Secs. 218.23 through 218.30 of 
this part.
    (h) Nothing in this section shall affect the alternative form of 
protection specified in Sec. 221.16 of this chapter with respect to 
inspection of rear end marking devices.

[58 FR 43293, Aug. 16, 1993, as amended at 60 FR 11050, Mar. 1, 1995]

Sec. 218.23  Blue signal display.

    (a) Blue signals displayed in accordance with Sec. 218.25, 218.27, 
or 218.29 signify that workers are on, under, or between rolling 
equipment. When so displayed--
    (1) The equipment may not be coupled to;
    (2) The equipment may not be moved, except as provided for in 
Sec. 218.29;
    (3) Other rolling equipment may not be placed on the same track so 
as to reduce or block the view of a blue signal, except as provided for 
in Sec. 218.29 (a), (b) and (c); and
    (4) Rolling equipment may not pass a displayed blue signal.
    (b) Blue signals must be displayed in accordance with Sec. 218.25, 
218.27, or 218.29 by each craft or group of workers prior to their going 
on, under, or between rolling equipment and may only be removed by the 
same craft or group that displayed them.

Sec. 218.24  One-person crew.

    (a) An engineer working alone as a one-person crew shall not perform 
duties on, under, or between rolling equipment, without blue signal 
protection that complies with Sec. 218.27 or Sec. 218.29, unless the 
duties to be performed are listed in Sec. 218.22(c)(5) and the following 
protections are provided:
    (1) Each locomotive in the locomotive engineer's charge is either:
    (i) Coupled to the train or other railroad rolling equipment to be 
assisted; or
    (ii) Stopped a sufficient distance from the train or rolling 
equipment to ensure a separation of at least 50 feet; and

[[Page 198]]

    (2) Before a controlling locomotive is left unattended, the one-
member crew shall secure the locomotive as follows:
    (i) The throttle is in the IDLE position;
    (ii) The generator field switch is in the OFF position;
    (iii) The reverser handle is removed (if so equipped);
    (iv) The isolation switch is in the ISOLATE position;
    (v) The locomotive independent (engine) brake valve is fully 
applied;
    (vi) The hand brake on the controlling locomotive is fully applied 
(if so equipped); and
    (vii) A bright orange engineer's tag (a tag that is a minimum of 
three by eight inches with the words ASSIGNED LOCOMOTIVE--DO NOT 
OPERATE) is displayed on the control stand of the controlling 
locomotive.
    (b) When assisting another train or yard crew with the equipment the 
other crew was assigned to operate, a single engineer must communicate 
directly, either by radio in compliance with part 220 of this chapter or 
by oral telecommunication of equivalent integrity, with the crew of the 
train to be assisted. The crews of both trains must notify each other in 
advance of all moves to be made by their respective equipment. Prior to 
attachment or detachment of the assisting locomotive(s), the crew of the 
train to be assisted must inform the single engineer that the train is 
secured against movement. The crew of the train to be assisted must not 
move the train or permit the train to move until authorized by the 
single engineer.

[60 FR 11050, Mar. 1, 1995]

    Effective Date Note: Section 218.24 was added at 60 FR 11050, Mar. 
1, 1995, effective May 15, 1995. At 60 FR 30469, June 9, 1995, 
Sec. 218.24 was suspended effective May 15, 1995.

Sec. 218.25  Workers on a main track.

    When workers are on, under, or between rolling equipment on a main 
track:
    (a) A blue signal must be displayed at each end of the rolling 
equipment; and
    (b) If the rolling equipment to be protected includes one or more 
locomotives, a blue signal must be attached to the controlling 
locomotive at a location where it is readily visible to the engineman or 
operator at the controls of that locomotive.
    (c) When emergency repair work is to be done on, under, or between a 
locomotive or one or more cars coupled to a locomotive, and blue signals 
are not available, the engineman or operator must be notified and 
effective measures must be taken to protect the workers making the 
repairs.

[44 FR 2175, Jan. 10, 1979, as amended at 48 FR 6123, Feb. 10, 1983]

Sec. 218.27  Workers on track other than main track.

    When workers are on, under, or between rolling equipment on track 
other than main track--
    (a) A blue signal must be displayed at or near each manually 
operated switch providing access to that track;
    (b) Each manually operated switch providing access to the track on 
which the equipment is located must be lined against movement to that 
track and locked with an effective locking device; and
    (c) The person in charge of the workers must have notified the 
operator of any remotely controlled switch that work is to be performed 
and have been informed by the operator that each remotely controlled 
switch providing access to the track on which the equipment is located 
has been lined against movement to that track and locked as prescribed 
in Sec. 218.30.
    (d) If rolling equipment requiring blue signal protection as 
provided for in this section is on a track equipped with one or more 
crossovers, both switches of each crossover must be lined against 
movement through the crossover toward that rolling equipment, and the 
switch of each crossover that provides access to the rolling equipment 
must be protected in accordance with the provisions of paragraphs (a) 
and (b), or (c) of this section.
    (e) If the rolling equipment to be protected includes one or more 
locomotives, a blue signal must be attached to the controlling 
locomotive at a location where it is readily visible to the engineman or 
operator at the controls of that locomotive.

[[Page 199]]

Sec. 218.29  Alternate methods of protection.

    Instead of providing blue signal protection for workers in 
accordance with Sec. 218.27, the following methods for blue signal 
protection may be used:
    (a) When workers are on, under, or between rolling equipment in a 
locomotive servicing track area:
    (1) A blue signal must be displayed at or near each switch providing 
entrance to or departure from the area;
    (2) Each switch providing entrance to or departure from the area 
must be lined against movement to the area and locked with an effective 
locking device; and
    (3) A blue signal must be attached to each controlling locomotive at 
a location where it is readily visible to the engineman or operator at 
the controls of that locomotive;
    (4) If the speed within this area is resticted to not more than 5 
miles per hour a derail, capable of restricting access to that portion 
of a track within the area on which the rolling equipment is located, 
will fulfill the requirements of a manually operated switch in 
compliance with paragraph (a)(2) of this section when positioned at 
least 50 feet from the end of the equipment to be protected by the blue 
signal, when locked in a derailing position with an effective locking 
device, and when a blue signal is displayed at the derail;
    (5) A locomotive may be moved onto a locomotive servicing area track 
after the blue signal has been removed from the entrance switch to the 
area. However, the locomotive must be stopped short of coupling to 
another locomotive;
    (6) A locomotive may be moved off of a locomotive servicing area 
track after the blue signal has been removed from the controlling 
locomotive to be moved and from the area departure switch;
    (7) If operated by an authorized employee under the direction of the 
person in charge of the workers, a locomotive protected by blue signals 
may be repositioned within this area after the blue signal has been 
removed from the locomotive to be repositioned and the workers on the 
affected track have been notified of the movement; and
    (8) Blue signal protection removed for the movement of locomotives 
as provided in paragraphs (a) (5) and (6) of this section must be 
restored immediately after the locomotive has cleared the switch.
    (b) When workers are on, under, or between rolling equipment in a 
car shop repair track area:
    (1) A blue signal must be displayed at or near each switch providing 
entrance to or departure from the area; and
    (2) Each switch providing entrance to or departure from the area 
must be lined against movement to the area and locked with an effective 
locking device;
    (3) If the speed within this area is restricted to not more than 5 
miles per hour, a derail capable of restricting access to that portion 
of a track within the area on which the rolling equipment is located 
will fulfill the requirements of a manually operated switch in 
compliance with paragraph (a)(2) of this section when positioned at 
least 50 feet from the end of the equipment to be protected by the blue 
signal, when locked in a derailing position with an effective locking 
device and when a blue signal is displayed at the derail;
    (4) If operated by an authorized employee under the direction of the 
person in charge of the workemen, a car mover may be used to reposition 
rolling equipment within this area after workers on the affected track 
have been notified of the movement.
    (c) Except as provided in paragraphs (a) and (b) of this section, 
when workers are on, under, or between rolling equipment on any track, 
other than a main track:
    (1) A derail capable of restricting access to that portion of the 
track on which such equipment is located, will fulfill the requirements 
of a manually operated switch when positioned no less than 150 feet from 
the end so such equipment; and
    (2) Each derail must be locked in a derailing position with an 
effective locking device and a blue signal must be displayed at each 
derail.
    (d) When emergency repair work is to be done on, under, or between a 
locomotive or one or more cars coupled to a locomotive, and blue signals 
are not available, the engineman or operator at the controls of that 
locomotive

[[Page 200]]

must be notified and effective measures must be taken to protect the 
workers making the repairs.

[44 FR 2175, Jan. 10, 1979, as amended at 48 FR 6123, Feb. 10, 1983]

Sec. 218.30  Remotely controlled switches.

    (a) After the operator of the remotely controlled switches has 
received the notification required by Sec. 218.27(c), he must line each 
remotely controlled switch against movement to that track and apply an 
effective locking device to the lever, button, or other device 
controlling the switch before he may inform the employee in charge of 
the workers that protection has been provided.
    (b) The operator may not remove the locking device unless he has 
been informed by the person in charge of the workers that it is safe to 
do so.
    (c) The operator must maintain for 15 days a written record of each 
notification which contains the following information:
    (1) The name and craft of the employee in charge who provided the 
notification;
    (2) The number or other designation of the track involved;
    (3) The date and time the operator notified the employee in charge 
that protection had been provided in accordance with paragraph (a) of 
this section; and
    (4) The date and time the operator was informed that the work had 
been completed, and the name and craft of the employee in charge who 
provided this information.

[44 FR 2175, Jan. 10, 1979, as amended at 48 FR 6123, Feb. 10, 1983]

             Subpart C--Protection of Trains and Locomotives

Sec. 218.31  Scope.

    This subpart prescribes minimum operating rule requirements for the 
protection of railroad employees engaged in the operation of trains, 
locomotives and other rolling equipment.

[42 FR 5065, Jan. 27, 1977]

Sec. 218.35  Yard limits.

    (a) After August 1, 1977, yard limits must be designated by--
    (1) Yard limit signs, and
    (2) Timetable, train orders, or special instructions.
    (b) After August 1, 1977, each railroad must have in effect an 
operating rule which complies with the requirements set forth below:
    (1) The main tracks within yard limits may be used, clearing the 
time an approaching designated class train is due to leave the nearest 
station where time is shown. In case of failure to clear the time of 
designated class trains, protection must be provided as Sec. 218.37. In 
yard limits where main tracks are governed by block signal system rules, 
protection as prescribed by Sec. 218.37 is not required.
    (2) Trains and engines, except designated class trains, within yard 
limits must move prepared to stop within onehalf the range of vision but 
not exceeding 20 m.p.h. unless the main track is known to be clear by 
block signal indications.
    (3) Within yard limits, movements against the current of traffic on 
the main tracks must not be made unless authorized and protected by 
train order, yardmaster, or other designated official and only under the 
operating restrictions prescribed in Sec. 218.35(b)(2).
    (c) Each railroad shall designate in the operating rule prescribed 
under paragraph (b) of this section the class or classes of trains which 
shall have superiority on the main track within yard limits.

[42 FR 5065, Jan. 27, 1977]

Sec. 218.37  Flag protection.

    (a) After August 1, 1977, each railroad must have in effect an 
operating rule which complies with the requirements set forth below:
    (1) Except as provided in paragraph (a)(2) of this section, flag 
protection shall be provided--
    (i) When a train is moving on the main track at less than one-half 
the maximum authorized speed (including slow order limits) in that 
territory, flag protection against following trains on the same track 
must be provided by a crew member by dropping off single

[[Page 201]]

lighted fusees at intervals that do not exceed the burning time of the 
fusee.
    (ii) When a train is moving on the main track at more than one-half 
the maximum authorized speed (including slow order limits) in that 
territory under circumstances in which it may be overtaken, crew members 
responsible for providing protection will take into consideration the 
grade, curvature of track, weather conditions, sight distance and 
relative speed of his train to following trains and will be governed 
accordingly in the use of fusees.
    (iii) When a train stops on main track, flag protection against 
following trains on the same track must be provided as follows: A crew 
member with flagman's signals must immediately go back at least the 
distance prescribed by timetable or other instructions for the 
territory, place at least two torpedoes on the rail at least 100 feet 
apart and display one lighted fusee. He may then return one-half of the 
distance to his train where he must remain until he has stopped the 
approaching train or is recalled. When recalled, he must leave one 
lighted fusee and while returning to his train, he must also place 
single lighted fusees at intervals that do not exceed the burning time 
of the fusee. When the train departs, a crew member must leave one 
lighted fusee and until the train resumes speed not less than one-half 
the maximum authorized speed (including slow order limits) in that 
territory, he must drop off single lighted fusees at intervals that do 
not exceed the burning time of the fusee.
    (iv) When required by the railroad's operating rules, a forward crew 
member with flagman's signals must protect the front of his train 
against opposing movements by immediately going forward at least the 
distance prescribed by timetable or other instructions for the territory 
placing at least two torpedoes on the rail at least 100 feet apart, 
displaying one lighted fusee, and remaining at that location until 
recalled.
    (v) Whenever a crew member is providing flag protection, he must not 
permit other duties to interfere with the protection of his train.
    (2) Flag protection against following trains on the same track is 
not required if--
    (i) The rear of the train is protected by at least two block 
signals;
    (ii) The rear of the train is protected by an absolute block;
    (iii) The rear of the train is within interlocking limits; or
    (iv) A train order specifies that flag protection is not required.
    (v) A railroad operates only one train at any given time.
    (b) Each railroad shall designate by timetable or other instruction 
for each territory the specific distance which a crew member providing 
flag protection must go out in order to provide adequate protection for 
his train.
    (c) Whenever the use of fusees is prohibited by a Federal, State or 
local fire regulation, each railroad operating within that jurisdiction 
shall provide alternate operating procedures to assure full protection 
of trains in lieu of flag protection required by this section.

[42 FR 5065, Jan. 27, 1977, as amended at 42 FR 38362, July 28, 1977]

Sec. 218.39  Hump operations.

    After June 30, 1984, each railroad that operates a remote control 
hump yard facility must have in effect an operating rule that adopts the 
following provisions in substance:
    (a) When a train or engine service employee is required to couple an 
air hose or to adjust a coupling device and that activity will require 
that the employee place himself between pieces of rolling equipment 
located on a bowl track, the operator of any remotely controlled switch 
that provides access from the apex of the hump to the track on which the 
rolling equipment is located shall be notified;
    (b) Upon such notification, the operator of such remotely controlled 
switch shall line it against movement to the affected bowl track and 
shall apply a locking or blocking device to the control for that switch; 
and
    (c) The operator shall then notify the employee that the requested 
protection has been provided and shall remove the locking or blocking 
device only after being notified by the employee that

[[Page 202]]

protection is no longer required on that track.

(Sec. 202, 84 Stat. 971 (45 U.S.C. 431); sec. 1.49(m) of the regulations 
of the Secretary of Transportation (49 CFR 1.49(m))

[49 FR 6497, Feb. 22, 1984]

Sec. 218.41  Noncompliance with hump operations rule.

    A person (including a railroad and any manager, supervisor, 
official, or other employee or agent of a railroad) who fails to comply 
with a railroad's operating rule issued pursuant to Sec. 218.39 of this 
part is subject to a penalty, as provided in appendix A of this part.

[53 FR 52928, Dec. 29, 1988]

      Subpart D--Prohibition Against Tampering With Safety Devices

    Source: 54 FR 5492, Feb. 3, 1989, unless otherwise noted.

Sec. 218.51  Purpose.

    (a) The purpose of this subpart is to prevent accidents and 
casualties that can result from the operation of trains when safety 
devices intended to improve the safety of their movement have been 
disabled.
    (b) This subpart does not prohibit intervention with safety devices 
that is permitted:
    (1) Under the provisions of Sec. 236.566 or Sec. 236.567 of this 
chapter;
    (2) Under the provisions of Sec. 218.61 of this part; or
    (3) Under the provisions of Sec. 229.9 of this chapter, provided 
that when a locomotive is being operated under the provision of 
Sec. 229.9(b) a designated officer has been notified of the defective 
alerter or deadman pedal at the first available point of communication.

[54 FR 5492, Feb. 3, 1989, as amended at 58 FR 36613, July 8, 1993]

Sec. 218.53  Scope and definitions.

    (a) This subpart establishes standards of conduct for railroads and 
individuals who operate or permit to be operated locomotives equipped 
with one or more of the safety devices identified in paragraph (c) of 
this section.
    (b) Disable means to unlawfully render a device incapable of proper 
and effective action or to materially impair the functioning of that 
device.
    (c) Safety device means any locomotive-mounted equipment that is 
used either to assure that the locomotive operator is alert, not 
physically incapacitated, aware of and complying with the indications of 
a signal system or other operational control system or to record data 
concerning the operation of that locomotive or the train it is powering. 
See appendix B to this part for a statement of agency policy on this 
subject.

Sec. 218.55  Tampering prohibited.

    Any individual who willfully disables a safety device is subject to 
a civil penalty as provided in appendix A of this part and to 
disqualification from performing safety-sensitive functions on a 
railroad if found unfit for such duties under the procedures provided 
for in 49 CFR part 209.

Sec. 218.57  Responsibilities of individuals.

    Any individual who knowingly operates a train, or permits it to be 
operated, when the controlling locomotive of that train is equipped with 
a disabled safety device, is subject to a civil penalty as provided for 
in appendix A of this part and to disqualification from performing 
safety-sensitive functions on a railroad if found to be unfit for such 
duties. See appendix B to this part for a statement of agency 
enforcement policy concerning violations of this section.

Sec. 218.59  Responsibilities of railroads.

    Any railroad that operates a train when the controlling locomotive 
of a train is equipped with a disabled safety device is subject to a 
civil penalty as provided for in appendix A of this part.

Sec. 218.61  Authority to deactivate safety devices.

    (a) For the purpose of this chapter, it is lawful to temporarily 
render a safety device incapable of proper or effective action or to 
materially impair its function if this action is taken as provided for 
in paragraph (b) or (c) of this section.

[[Page 203]]

    (b) If a locomotive is equipped with a device to assure that the 
operator is alert or not physically incapacitated, that device may be 
deactivated when:
    (1) The locomotive is not the controlling locomotive;
    (2) The locomotive is performing switching operations and not 
hauling cars in a manner that constitutes a train movement under part 
232 of this chapter:
    (3) The locomotive is dead-in-tow; or
    (4) The locomotive is a mid-train slave unit being controlled by 
radio from a remote location.
    (c) If a locomotive is equipped with a device to record data 
concerning the operation of that locomotive and/or of the train it is 
powering, that device may be deactivated only in accordance with the 
provisions of Sec. 229.135.

[54 FR 5492, Feb. 3, 1989, as amended at 58 FR 36613, July 8, 1993]

               Subpart E--Protection of Occupied Camp Cars

    Source: 54 FR 39545, Sept. 27, 1989, unless otherwise noted.

Sec. 218.71  Purpose and scope.

    This subpart prescribes minimum requirements governing protection of 
camp cars that house railroad employees. The rule does not apply to such 
cars while they are in a train.

Sec. 218.73  Warning signal display.

    (a) Warning signals, i.e., a white disk with the words ``Occupied 
Camp Car'' in black lettering during daylight hours and an illuminated 
white signal at night, displayed in accordance with Sec. 218.75, 
Sec. 218.77, or Sec. 218.79 signify that employees are in, around, or in 
the vicinity of camp cars. Once the signals have been displayed--
    (1) The camp cars may not be moved for coupling to other rolling 
equipment or moved to another location;
    (2) Rolling equipment may not be placed on the same track so as to 
reduce or block the view of a warning signal; and
    (3) Rolling equipment may not pass a warning signal.
    (b) Warning signals indicating the presence of occupied camp cars, 
displayed in accordance with Secs. 218.75 and 218.79, shall be displayed 
by a designated occupant of the camp cars or that person's immediate 
supervisor. The signal(s) shall be displayed as soon as such cars are 
placed on the track, and such signals may only be removed by those same 
individuals prior to the time the cars are moved to another location.

Sec. 218.75  Methods of protection for camp cars.

    When camp cars requiring protection are on either main track or 
track other than main track:
    (a) A warning signal shall be displayed at or near each switch 
providing access to that track;
    (b) The person in charge of the camp car occupants shall immediately 
notify the person responsible for directing train movements on that 
portion of the railroad where the camp cars are being parked;
    (c) Once notified of the presence of camp cars and their location on 
main track or other than main track, the person responsible for 
directing train movements on that portion of the railroad where the camp 
cars are being parked shall take appropriate action to alert affected 
personnel to the presence of the cars;
    (d) Each manually operating switch providing access to track on 
which the camp cars are located shall be lined against movement to that 
track and secured with an effective locking device and spiked; and
    (e) Each remotely controlled switch providing access to the track on 
which the camp cars are located shall be protected in accordance with 
Sec. 218.77.

Sec. 218.77  Remotely controlled switches.

    (a) After the operator of the remotely controlled switch is notified 
that a camp car is to be placed on a particular track, he shall line 
such switch against movement to that track and apply an effective 
locking device applied to the lever, button, or other device controlling 
the switch before informing the person in charge of the camp car 
occupants that protection has been provided.
    (b) The operator may not remove the locking device until informed by 
the

[[Page 204]]

person in charge of the camp car occupants that protection is no longer 
required.
    (c) The operator shall maintain for 15 days a written record of each 
notification that contains the following information:
    (1) The name and craft of the employee in charge who provided the 
notification;
    (2) The number or other designation of the track involved;
    (3) The date and time the operator notified the employee in charge 
that protection had been provided in accordance with paragraph (a) of 
this section; and
    (4) The date and time the operator was informed that the work had 
been completed, and the name and craft of the employee in charge who 
provided this information.
    (d) When occupied camp cars are parked on main track, a derail, 
capable of restricting access to that portion of the track on which such 
equipment is located, shall be positioned no less than 150 feet from the 
end of such equipment and locked in a derailing position with an 
effective locking device, and a warning signal must be displayed at the 
derail.

Sec. 218.79  Alternative methods of protection.

    Instead of providing protection for occupied camp cars in accordance 
with Sec. 218.75 or Sec. 218.77, the following methods of protection may 
be used:
    (a) When occupied camp cars are on track other than main track:
    (1) A warning signal must be displayed at or near each switch 
providing access to or from the track;
    (2) Each switch providing entrance to or departure from the area 
must be lined against movement to the track and locked with an effective 
locking device; and
    (3) If the speed within this area is restricted to not more than 
five miles per hour, a derail, capable of restricting access to that 
portion of track on which the camp cars are located, will fulfill the 
requirements of a manually operated switch in compliance with paragraph 
(a)(2) of this section when positioned at least 50 feet from the end of 
the camp cars to be protected by the warning signal, when locked in a 
derailing position with an effective locking device, and when a warning 
signal is displayed at the derail.
    (b) Except as provided in paragraph (a) of this section, when 
occupied camp cars are on track other than main track:
    (1) A derail, capable of restricting access to that portion of the 
track on which such equipment is located, will fulfill the requirements 
of a manually operated switch when positioned no less than 150 feet from 
the end of such equipment; and
    (2) Each derail must be locked in a derailing position with an 
effective locking device and a warning signal must be displayed at each 
derail.

Sec. 218.80  Movement of occupied camp cars.

    Occupied cars may not be humped or flat switched unless coupled to a 
locomotive.

         Appendix A to Part 218--Schedule of Civil Penalties \1\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ Except as provided for in Sec. 218.57, a penalty may be assessed 
against an individual only for a willful violation. The Administrator 
reserves the right to assess a penalty of up to $22,000 for any 
violation where the circumstances warrant. See 49 CFR part 209, appendix 
A.

------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                               Willful
                    Section                      Violation    violation
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Subpart B--Blue signal protection of workmen:
    218.22 Utility employees:
        (a) Employee qualifications...........       $5,000       $7,500

[[Page 205]]


        (b) Concurrent service................        5,000        7,500
        (c) Assignment conditions.............
        (1) No controlling locomotive.........        5,000        7,500
        (2) Empty cab.........................        5,000        7,500
        (3)(4) Improper communication.........        5,000        7,500
        (5) Performing functions not listed...        2,000        4,000
        (d) Improper release of utility               2,000        4,000
         employee.............................
        (f) More than three utility employees         2,000        4,000
         with one crew........................
    218.23 Blue signal display                        5,000        7,500
    218.24 One-person crew:
        (a)(1) Equipment not coupled or               2,000        4,000
         insufficiently separated.............
        (a)(2) Unoccupied locomotive cab not          5,000        7,500
         secured..............................
        (b) Helper service....................        2,000        4,000
    218.25 Workmen on a main track                    5,000        7,500
    218.27 Workmen on track other than main
     track:
        (a) Protection provided except that           2,000        4,000
         signal not displayed at switch.......
        (b) through (e).......................        5,000        7,500
    218.29 Alternate methods of protection:
        (a)(1) protection provided except that        2,000        4,000
         signal not displayed at switch.......
        (a)(2) through (a)(8).................        5,000        7,500
        (b)(1) Protection provided except that        2,000        4,000
         signal not displayed at switch.......
        (b)(2) through (b)(4).................        5,000        7,500
        (c) Use of derails....................        5,000        7,500
        (d) Emergency repairs.................        5,000        7,500
    218.30 Remotely controlled switches:
        (a) and (b)...........................        5,000        7,500
        (c)...................................        1,000        2,000
Subpart C--Protection of trains and
 locomotives:
    218.35 Yard limits:
        (a) and (b)...........................        5,000        7,500
        (c)...................................        1,000        2,000
    218.37 Flag protection:
        (a)...................................        5,000        7,500
        (b) and (c)...........................        5,000        7,500
    218.39 Hump operations....................        5,000        7,500
    218.41 Noncompliance with hump operations         5,000        7,500
     rule.....................................
Subpart D--Prohibition against tampering with
 safety devices:
    218.55 Tampering..........................  ...........        7,500
    218.57 (i) Knowingly operating or                 2,500  ...........
     permitting operation of disabled
     equipment................................
         (ii) Willfully operating or            ...........        5,000
         permitting operation of disabled
         equipment............................
    218.59 Operation of disabled equipment....        2,500        5,000
------------------------------------------------------------------------


[53 FR 52928, Dec. 29, 1988, as amended at 54 FR 5492, Feb. 3, 1989; 58 
FR 43293, Aug. 16, 1993; 60 FR 11050, Mar. 1, 1995; 63 FR 11621, Mar. 
10, 1998]

 Appendix B to Part 218--Statement of Agency Enforcement Policy on Blue 
                 Signal Protection for Utility Employees

    The following examples of the application of the train or yard crew 
exclusion from required blue signal protection for utility employees are 
provided to clarify FRA's enforcement policy. In the first four 
examples, the utility employee is properly attached to and functioning 
as member of a train or yard crew and is excluded from blue signal 
protection, provided all the conditions specified in Sec. 218.22 are 
met:
    Example 1: A utility employee assists a train crew by adding or 
reducing railroad cars to or from the train. The utility employee may 
perform any duties which would normally be conducted by members of the 
train crew, i.e., setting or releasing handbrakes, coupling air hoses 
and other connections, prepare rail cars for coupling, and perform air 
brake tests.
    Example 2: A utility employee is assigned to assist a yard crew for 
the purpose of classifying and assembling railroad cars. The yard crew 
onboard their locomotive arrives at the location in the yard where the 
work is to be performed. At that time, the utility employee may attach 
himself to the yard crew and commence duties as a member of that yard 
crew.
    Example 3: A utility employee is assigned to inspect, test, remove 
and replace if necessary, a combination rear end marking device/end of 
train device on a through freight train. The utility employee attaches 
himself to the train crew after the arrival of the train and its crew at 
the location where this work is to be conducted. He may then perform 
duties as a member of that crew.
    Example 4: A railroad manager who properly attaches himself as a 
utility employee

[[Page 206]]

to a train or yard crew, in accordance with Sec. 218.22, may then 
function as a member of the train or yard crew under the exclusion 
provided for train and yard crews.

    Note: In the last four examples, any railroad employee, including 
regularly assigned crew members, would need blue signal protection to 
perform the described function.

    Example 5: Prior to the arrival of a through freight train, a 
utility employee installs an end-of-train device on one end of a block 
of railroad cars that are scheduled to be picked up by the freight 
train.
    Example 6: A railroad employee attaches himself to a train or yard 
crew while the crew is in the ready room preparing to take charge of 
their train. Prior to the train crew leaving the ready room and taking 
charge of the equipment, the employee couples air hoses and other 
connections between the locomotives.
    Example 7: A railroad employee is attached to a train crew after the 
train crew has taken charge of the train. It is necessary for the 
employee to perform a repair on a rail car, such as replacing a brake 
shoe, in addition to those duties normally performed by train or yard 
crew members.
    Example 8: A train or yard crew, supplemented by three utility 
employees, has an assigned locomotive and train. The regular crew, 
including the engineer, has left the train to eat lunch. The utility 
employees have remained with the train and are coupling air hoses 
between rail cars in the train.

[58 FR 43293, Aug. 16, 1993]

   Appendix C to Part 218--Statement of Agency Enforcement Policy on 
                                Tampering

    The Rail Safety Improvement Act of 1988 (Pub. L. 100-342, enacted 
June 22, 1988) (``RSIA'') raised the maximum civil penalties available 
under the railroad safety laws and made individuals liable for willful 
violations of those laws. Section 21 of the RSIA requires that FRA adopt 
regulations addressing three related but distinct aspects of problems 
that can occur when safety devices are tampered with or disabled. It 
requires that FRA make it unlawful for (i) any individual to willfully 
tamper with or disable a device; (ii) any individual to knowingly 
operate or permit to be operated a train with a tampered or disabled 
device; and (iii) any railroad to operate such a train.
    Because the introduction of civil penalties against individuals 
brings FRA's enforcement of the rail safety laws into a new era and 
because the changes being introduced by this regulation are so 
significant, FRA believes that it is advisable to set forth the manner 
in which it will exercise its enforcement authority under this 
regulation.

                   Safety Devices Covered by This Rule

    FRA has employed a functional description of what constitutes a 
safety device under this rule. FRA's wording effectively identifies 
existing equipment and is sufficiently expansive to cover equipment that 
may appear in the future, particularly devices associated with advanced 
train control systems currently undergoing research testing.
    FRA has been advised by portions of the regulated community that its 
functional definition has some potential for confusing people who read 
the rule without the benefit of the preamble discussions concerning the 
meaning of this definition. Since this rule is specifically intended to 
preclude misconduct by individuals, FRA wants this rule to be easily 
comprehended by all who read it. To achieve that clarity, FRA has decide 
to specify which types of equipment it considers to be within the scope 
of this rule and provide some examples of equipment that is not covered. 
In addition, FRA is ready and willing to respond in writing to any 
inquiry about any other devices that a party believes are treated 
ambiguously under this rule. This regulation applies to a variety of 
devices including equipment known as ``event recorders,'' ``alerters,'' 
``deadman controls,'' ``automatic cab signals,'' ``cab signal 
whistles,'' ``automatic train stop equipment,'' and ``automatic train 
control equipment.'' FRA does not consider the following equipment to be 
covered by this rule: Radios; monitors for end-of-train devices; bells 
or whistles that are not connected to alerters, deadman pedals, or 
signal system devices; fans for controlling interior temperature of 
locomotive cabs; and locomotive performance monitoring devices, unless 
they record data such as train speed and air brake operations. Although 
FRA considers such devices beyond the scope of the regulation, this does 
not imply that FRA condones the disabling of such devices. FRA will not 
hesitate to include such devices at a later date should instances of 
tampering with these devices be discovered. FRA does not currently 
perceive a need to directly proscribe tampering with such devices 
because there is no history of these devices being subjected to 
tampering.

          Subsequent Operators of Trains With Disabled Devices

    Section 218.57 addresses instances in which one individual has 
tampered with a safety device and a second individual (a ``subsequent 
operator'') knowingly operates a train or permits it to be operated, 
notwithstanding the presence of the disabled or tampered-with unit. The 
most common occurrence addressed by this provision is the situation in 
which a train crew encounters a locomotive with a safety device that has 
been tampered with prior to the crew's assuming responsibility for the 
locomotive. FRA has

[[Page 207]]

structured this provision and its attendant enforcement policy to 
reflect the fact that instances in which one individual encounters a 
locomotive that someone else has tampered with are relatively infrequent 
occurrences.
    FRA's regulatory prohibition for subsequent operator conduct 
reflects the legal standard for individual culpability set forth in the 
RSIA. Under the relevant statutory standard (``knowingly operates or 
permits to be operated a train on which such devices have been tampered 
with or disabled by another person'')--now incorporated into 
Sec. 218.57--individuals could be held to a simple negligence standard 
of conduct, i.e., a standard of reasonable care under the circumstances. 
FRA's conclusion about the proper interpretation of the word 
``knowingly'' stems from both normal canons of statutory construction 
and analysis of decisional law concerning the use of similar statutory 
constructs in the civil penalty context. It is also consistent with 
other Departmental interpretations of the word as used in similar 
contexts. (See 49 CFR 107.299, defining ``knowingly'' under the 
Hazardous Materials Transportation Act, 49 App. U.S.C. 1801 et seq.)
    Under that statutory language, the responsible members of the crew 
could be culpable if either (1) due to their failure to exercise 
reasonable care, they failed to determine that the safety device was not 
functioning, or (2) having ascertained that the device was not 
functioning, still elected to operate the train. Similarly, railroad 
supervisors who permit or direct that a train with a disabled device be 
operated after having learned that the safety device is not functioning 
or after having failed to use reasonable care in the performance of 
their duties could also be subject to sanction.
    However, as a matter of enforcement policy, application of a 
negligence standard in this particular context presently appears 
unwarranted. We have seen no evidence of an employee's negligent failure 
to detect another employee's tampering having caused a safety problem. 
FRA can effectively attack the known dimensions of the tampering problem 
by employing an enforcement policy that limits its enforcement actions 
to situations where individuals clearly had actual knowledge of the 
disabled device and intentionally operated the train notwithstanding 
that knowledge.
    Therefore, FRA will not take enforcement action against an 
individual under Sec. 218.57 absent a showing of such actual knowledge 
of the facts. Actual, subjective knowledge need not be demonstrated. It 
will suffice to show objectively that the alleged violator must have 
known the facts based on reasonable inferences drawn from the 
circumstances. For example, it is reasonable to infer that a person 
knows about something plainly in sight on the locomotive he is 
operating. Also, unlike the case where willfulness must be shown (see 
FRA's statement of policy at 49 CFR part 209, appendix A), knowledge of 
or reckless disregard for the law need not be shown to make out a 
violation of Sec. 218.57. The knowledge relevant here is knowledge of 
the facts constituting the violation, not knowledge of the law.
    Should FRA receive evidence indicating that a stricter enforcement 
policy is necessary to address the tampering problem, it will revise its 
enforcement policy to permit enforcement actions based only on a showing 
of the subsequent operator's negligent failure to detect the tampering, 
as the relevant provision of the RSIA permits it to do now. Any such 
change in enforcement policy will become effective only after 
publication of a revised version of this appendix.

[54 FR 5492, Feb. 3, 1989. Redesignated and amended at 58 FR 43293, Aug. 
16, 1993]



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