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Rules Planned to Keep RR Workers From Being Hit

WASHINGTON (CN) - The Federal Railroad Administration plans to amend railroad maintenance worker safety rules to reduce the risk of a worker's being hit by a train on a nearby track.

The agency has studied the nine railroad worker fatalities that have occurred since its 1997 worker safety rules went into effect. It found that most of these incidents occur within 14 feet of the track on which the work is being performed, when one worker is on the ground, when a worker might be distracted by work that involves noise or smoke, and when a single worker is meant to be in control of movement on nearby tracks as well as the one on which the work is being done.

The agency's proposed rules would adopt certain safety standards for maintenance teams that have controlled tracks within 19 feet of the track they are working on. The agency also proposes to require that railroads, contractors to railroads, and roadway workers comply with these procedures.

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