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500 Water Street, 15th Floor
Jacksonville, FL 32202
CSX Transportation, Inc.
500 Water Street
Jacksonville, FL 32202
Released: Aug 28, 2008
New AAR Loading Rules for Scrap Metals
One of the key causes of injuries to railroad employees is slip/trip/fall hazards, which can occur when debris or loose material accumulates in walkways between tracks in rail yards.
Scrap falling from the top of open gondola cars is a major contributor of yard debris. Loose scrap can also create hazards at grade crossings and other areas of public access, such as commuter rail stations.
During the past year increases in incidents have heightened safety concerns. According to the AAR, several member railroads have reported serious injuries, near miss injuries, derailments, and rail car set outs caused by loose scrap metal falling off or hanging from these cars. Railroad employees have been struck by metal scrap hanging from the cars or have tripped over scrap metal lying on the ground. These loads were either improperly loaded or the material was loaded in such a manner as to allow it to migrate over the sides or ends of the cars.
In an effort to address this problem, the AAR Open Top Loading Rules Committee has approved revisions to Figure 87, Section 2 of the Open Top Loading Rules. The major revision is to restrict loose scrap metal to be loaded below the top of rail car sides and ends at any point of the load.
A copy of the appropriate loading rule, demonstrating the approved method for loading scrap, is included for your review:
Figure 87, Section 2
With these safety concerns in mind, we ask that you take the time to review your loading practices, and to ensure that scrap is loaded safely within the confines of railcars loaded at your facilities.
New STCC for Mill Rolls
CSXT, along with other carriers in the rail industry, has experienced derailments and load shifts due to improperly secured mill rolls loaded in gondola cars. The unique shape and density of mill rolls can cause imbalanced loads if allowed to roll to one side, or are loaded heavy to one side or one end of a rail car. Train accidents and load shifts have typically involved mill rolls identified under the scrap metal STCC description.
Effective immediately, any scrap mill rolls or other cylindrical scrap subject to rolling must be shipped under the new STCC 4021120, "Mill Rollers or Rolls, Iron or Steel, Old, Worn Out, Other than Rolling Machines, Having Value for Re-melting Purposes, Requiring Special Handling". Shipments identified under this new STCC will require inspection and approval prior to shipment. The new STCC, when applied to a shipment, will automatically activate the inspection and approval process.
Please ensure that future shipments of scrap mill rolls are classified under the new STCC and properly secured before rail cars are shipped. The AAR Open Top Loading Rules Manual requires that "the load must be located so that the weight along both sides of the car is equal for the entire length of the load, the weight of load on one truck must not exceed one-half the load limit stenciled on the car, and the load must be secured to prevent any portion of the load from shifting, resulting in a potential off-balance condition."
We appreciate your efforts in helping to make our industry a safe choice of transportation in the communities we serve. If you would like additional information or loading assistance, please contact CSX Load Engineering & Design Services at 1-800-327-9715, ext. 6373.