Technical Bulletin to Railway Companies: Locomotives Equipped with Roll-Away Protection

Date: April 2019

The purpose of this bulletin is to describe federal requirements pertaining to locomotives equipped with a safety control system with roll-away protection, under the Railway Locomotive Inspection and Safety Rules (Locomotive Rules).

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Introduction

In order to strengthen the requirements pertaining to the securement of railway equipment, Rule 112 of the Canadian Rail Operating Rules (CROR) was amended to require unattended railway equipment be secured with an additional means of securement, in addition to handbrakes, in certain locations. A “locomotive equipped with roll-away protection” is one such allowable means of additional securement.

Requirements for locomotives equipped with roll-away protection are included in sections 13 and 29 of the Locomotive Rules, under the requirements pertaining to the safety control equipment.

The Locomotive Rules define “safety control” as a device (or devices) that will cause a brake application to be initiated automatically if the locomotive operator becomes incapacitated. It is also referred to in the Locomotive Rules as the “safety control system” and the “reset safety control”.

The term “roll-away protection”, while not defined in any industry standard or rule, refers to a secondary function of the safety control system that initiates a warning activation sequence when unintentional movement is detected on stationary equipment.

The Locomotive Rules contemplate three types of safety control equipment: the safety control foot pedal, the safety control system without roll-away protection and the safety control system with roll-away protection. This bulletin deals with locomotives equipped with a safety control system with roll-away protection.

Overview of Regulatory Requirements

The Locomotive Rules prescribe the minimum safety standards for locomotives operated by railway companies pursuant to the Railway Safety Act.

As per section 4.1 of the Locomotive Rules, railway companies are responsible for the inspection and repair of all locomotives to ensure safe operations. All components, appurtenances and control apparatuses of all locomotives must be designed and maintained to perform their intended function.

Section 5.1 of the Locomotive Rules, provides that railway companies shall ensure that locomotives placed or continued in service are free from all safety defects described in Part III of the rules, including sections 29.1, 29.3 and 29.4 described below.

As per section 7.3 of the Locomotive Rules, railway companies must maintain a record of all locomotives which received a safety inspection and retain this information for a minimum of ninety two days. This information has to be made available to railway safety inspectors upon request.

Safety control equipment requirements for locomotives equipped with roll-away protection are outlined in sections 13 and 29 of the Locomotive Rules.

As per section 13.1 of the Locomotive Rules, safety control systems that, at a minimum, will initiate a full service brake application and remove all tractive effort if the operator becomes inattentive or incapacitated are required on all controlling locomotives.

Section 13.2 of the Locomotive Rules deals with design and performance requirements for controlling locomotives equipped with a safety control system with roll-away protection. Among other listed requirements, these locomotives must meet the Association of American Railroad's Standard S-5513 – Locomotive Alerter Requirements (AAR Standard S-5513). The AAR Standard S-5513 applies to locomotives built on or after January 1st, 2009, and prescribes the parameters for the activation of the safety control system when a stationary locomotive unintentionally moves.

As per section 29.1, of the Locomotive Rules, it is prohibited for a railway company to place in service, other than on designated or yard service, a controlling locomotive not equipped with an operative reset safety control.

More specifically, section 29.3 of the Locomotive Rules prohibits a railway company from placing into service a controlling locomotive equipped with a safety control system with roll-away protection that does not meet the requirements outlined in section 13.2 of the rules.

Section 29.4 of the Locomotive Rules stipulates that it must be communicated to affected railway employees when a locomotive is equipped with a safety control system with roll-away protection.

As per section 35.1 of the Locomotive Rules, a railway company shall maintain specification records for each of its owned or leased locomotives indicating, among other requirements, the type of safety control system (Appendix II of the Locomotive Rules).

As per section 35.2 of the Locomotive Rules, a railway company shall retain on file, and provide to Transport Canada upon request, the listed safety guidelines and procedures for the reset safety control systems. This includes testing procedures for the full functionality of the reset safety control, which is to include roll-away protection functionality, when so equipped.

Functionality Requirements for Locomotives Equipped with Roll-Away Protection

As per section 13.2 of the Locomotive Rules, a controlling locomotive equipped with a safety control system with roll-away protection must:

  1. be wired such that the safety control system power source is fed through the battery knife switch or circuit breaker;
  2. meet the requirements of the most current "Association of American Railroads Manual of Standards and Recommended Practices" (S-5513); and
  3. commence safety control system warning timing cycle and subsequently initiate a penalty brake application of the train air brakes should any of the following occur:
    1. power is interrupted to the safety control system;
    2. locomotive brake cylinder pressure is less than 25 psi;
    3. speed is detectedFootnote 1.

The AAR Standard S-5513 prescribes the parameters for the activation of the safety control system (or “alerter” as referred to in AAR Standard), when providing for roll-away protection.

As per the sub-section 5.1 of the AAR S-5513, the safety control system shall become active if any of the following conditions is met:

  1. brake cylinder pressure falls below 25 psi, or
  2. speed is detected.

As per sub-section 5.2 of the AAR S-5513, once activated, the safety control system shall remain active until a speed of 0 mph is reached AND brake cylinder pressure becomes 25 psi or greater.

As per sub-section 7.1 of the AAR S-5513, when providing for roll-away protection, the first activation of the safety control system warning timing cycle shall occur at a time interval of approximately 10 seconds.

As per sub-section 8.2 of the AAR S-5513, it is prohibited for a locomotive to contain any automatic reset events that are not initiated by physical movement of the operator when performing a specific function at the location of the operator's controls.

The AAR S-5513 does not explicitly indicate a time lapse for initiating a penalty brake application, once the safety control warning timing cycle has expired; however, this brake application should commence as soon as technically feasible.

Conclusion

Railway companies are responsible for ensuring that locomotive safety control systems are designed and maintained to perform their intended function. This responsibility includes ensuring roll-away protection functionality through inspections, testing and repairs.

Controlling locomotives equipped with a safety control system with roll-away protection must be identified by the company as being so equipped (as per section 35.1 and Appendix II of the Locomotive Rules) and must meet the following functionality requirements:

  1. activation, within approximately 10 seconds, of the safety control system warning timing cycle when power is interrupted to the safety control system (as per the requirements of 13.2 c) i) of the Locomotive Rules and sub-section 7.1 of the AAR S-5513 incorporated by reference under 13.2 b) of the Locomotive Rules);
  2. activation, within approximately 10 seconds, of the safety control system warning timing cycle when brake cylinder pressure is less than 25 psi (as per the requirements of 13.2 c) ii) of the Locomotive Rules and sub-section 7.1 of the AAR S-5513 incorporated by reference under 13.2 b) of the Locomotive Rules);
  3. activation, within approximately 10 seconds, of the safety control system warning timing cycle when speed is detected by the systemFootnote 2 (as per the requirements of 13.2 c) iii) of the Locomotive Rules and sub-section 7.1 of the AAR S-5513 incorporated by reference under 13.2 b) of the Locomotive Rules);
  4. once activated, the safety control is to remain active, until a speed of 0 mph is reached AND brake cylinder pressure becomes 25 psi or greater (as per sub-section 5.2 of the AAR S-5513 incorporated by reference under the requirements of 13.2 b) of the Locomotive Rules); and
  5. no automatic reset of the safety control, that would cancel the warning sequence and eventual penalty brake application (as per sub-sections 5.2 and 8.2 of the AAR S-5513, incorporated by reference under the requirements of 13.2 b) of the Locomotive Rules).

Pursuant to section 29.1 of the Locomotive Rules, it is prohibited for a company to place into service a controlling locomotive not equipped with an operative safety control system – whether the reset safety control is equipped with roll-away protection or not.

Pursuant to section 29.3 of the Locomotive Rules, it is further prohibited for a company to place into service a controlling locomotive, identified as being equipped with a safety control system with roll-away protection, which is not compliant with ALL of the five roll-away protection functionality requirements outlined above.

Testing procedures for the safety control systems with roll-away protection need to include testing for roll-away protection functionality.

As such, Transport Canada expects railway companies that operate locomotives equipped with roll-away protection, to retain on file, pursuant to section 35.2 of the Locomotive Rules, testing procedures that demonstrates testing for EACH of the roll-away protection functionality requirements outlined above.

Pursuant to section 5.1 of the Locomotive Rules, railway companies must ensure that locomotives placed or continued in service are free from all safety defects. This includes ensuring that controlling locomotives not equipped with an operative safety control system are not put into service. This also includes ensuring that controlling locomotives identified as being equipped with roll-away protection are compliant with ALL of the five roll-away protection functionality requirements outlined previously.

Pursuant to section 7.3 of the Locomotive Rules, railway companies must maintain a record of all locomotives which received a safety inspection and retain this information for a minimum of ninety two days. This information has to be made available to railway safety inspectors upon request. Safety inspections include verifying that a locomotive may move safely as well as identifying safety defects listed in Part III of the rules.

Safety inspections of the safety control systems must be conducted in order to ensure that locomotives placed or continued in service are free from all safety defects. Further, safety inspection records to that effect must be kept in order to be in compliance with section 7.3 of the Locomotive Rules.

As such, Transport Canada expects railway companies that operate locomotives identified as being equipped with roll-away protection, to retain on file, documentation that demonstrates clearly that the safety control system has been tested and complies with EACH of the five functionality requirements outlined above.

For additional information on this Bulletin, please communicate with Transport Canada's Rail Safety Head Office

Ottawa head office

Rail Safety
Transport Canada
330 Sparks St
Ottawa ON K1A 0N8

Email: railsafety@tc.gc.ca
Telephone: 613-998-2985
Facsimile: 613-990-7767

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