Proposed rule aims to stop railroad crew distractions

May 20, 2010

The Federal Railroad Administration on May 18 published a notice of proposed rulemaking (.pdf file) that would prohibit the use of cell phones and other distracting electronic devices by on-duty railroad operating employees.

If adopted, the rule would explicitly restrict and, in some cases, prohibit the use of cell phones and other handheld devices by safety-critical employees, including locomotive engineers, conductors and switchmen. FRA also is seeking comment on whether violations of this proposed amendment should be a basis for revoking a locomotive engineer's certification.