On June 30, SMART TD’s legislative office submitted comments to the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) Information Collection Request regarding two FRA research studies on locomotive technology and automation.
SMART TD urged the FRA to consider the critical factors of fatigue, distraction and disengagement in the studies, with fatigue being a primary concern, and also, to consider whether or not these factors can be accurately assessed in a locomotive simulation setting.
Click here to read the entire comments submitted by the SMART TD Legislative Office to the FRA.
Below are excerpts of official comments from SMART TD National Legislative Director John Risch, to the FRA:
“We recommend that these studies be designed to simulate the operation of a locomotive in a way, to the extent possible, that reflects the real life working conditions of locomotive operators. A failure to do so will result in the collection of information that will inaccurately reflect the success and failures of autonomous technology.
“First and foremost, the FRA must consider the effects of fatigue: the number one safety issue in the freight rail industry.”