FRA issues final rule on locomotive horns

The Federal Railroad Administration published its Final Rule on the use of Locomotive Horns in the April 27 Federal Register.

Locomotive engineers need to be on the lookout for instructions from their railroad regarding compliance with the new regulation for sounding train horns.

The final rule will require the locomotive horn be sounded while trains approach and enter public highway-rail grade crossings. The rule allows for an exception to the above requirement in circumstances in which there is not a significant risk of loss of life or serious personal injury, use of the locomotive horn is impractical, or safety measures fully compensate for the absence of the warning provided by the locomotive horn.

Communities that qualify for this exception may create "quiet zones" within which locomotive horns would not be routinely sounded.

The effective date of this final rule is June 24, 2005. However, public authorities may begin to provide quiet zone-related documentation to FRA and other parties 30 days after April 27, 2005. This final rule supercedes the interim final rule, which was published on December 18, 2003. Therefore, the interim final rule will not take effect.

A complete copy of the Final Rule is available on the Internet at: .



© 2005 Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen