The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) was created by the Department ofTransportation Act of 1966. It is one of ten agencies within the U.S. Department ofTransportation concerned with intermodal transportation. FRA promotes safe,environmentally sound, successful railroad transportation to meet the needs of all customers today and tomorrow.
FRA's Office of Railroad Safety promotes and regulates safety throughout the Nation's railroad industry. The office executes its regulatory and inspection responsibilities through a diverse staff of railroad safety experts.
The Federal Railroad Administration is responsible for working with stakeholders to develop cohesive goals and policies for maintaining and improving the U.S. freight and passenger rail networks. This section covers various efforts across America and the world in helping to deliver safe, reliable, and efficient rail transportation.
FRA Research & Development (R&D) projects contribute to the FRA's safety regulatory processes, to railroad suppliers, to railroads involved in the transportation of freight, intercity passengers, commuters, and to railroad employees and their labor organizations.
In this section, we provide descriptions and comprehensive, official sources for FRA's regulations (also called rules), selected legislation, as well as policy and guidance documents. Additionally, you will find current topics of high interest or significant impact to Congress, railroads, employees, labor, public interest groups and other stakeholders.
FRA supports passenger and freight railroading through a variety of competitive grant, dedicated grant, and loan programs to develop safety improvements, relieve congestion, and encourage the expansion and upgrade of passenger and freight rail infrastructure and services. FRA also provides training and technical assistance to grantees and stakeholders.
EMF Monitoring on Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor: Post-Electrification Measurements and Analysis
AUTHOR: Dr. David Fugate, William Jacobs OFFICE: RPD REPORT NUMBER: DOT/FRA/RDV-06/01 SUBJECT: Amtrak, Passenger Rail KEYWORDS: Northeast Corridor, Amtrak, Acela, electromagnetic fields (EMF), electromagnetic radiation (EMR), ABSTRACT: This survey of electromagnetic fields (EMF) and radiation (EMR) due to the electrification infrastructure and operations of Amtrak Acela trains on the Northeast Corridor from New Haven, CT, to Boston, MA, was performed by Electric Research & Management (ERM) with Amtrak cooperation. The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) and Volpe National Transportation Systems Center sponsored this survey to comply with environmental requirements. EMF levels were measured as a function of frequency and location on board the locomotive, inside a passenger coach, under the catenary and along the wayside in urban and rural locations, and near 10 representative traction power substations. Observed temporal and frequency-variability on board Acela and near the wayside is common to all of the electric transportation systems. Average magnetic fields in the passenger compartment were lower than, and maxima were comparable to most other rail and maglev systems. EMF exposures of passengers onboard Acela are lowest among rail and maglev systems studied to date. Average and maximum magnetic fields in the locomotive cab were lower than most other electric rail and maglev systems. Background EMF levels increased by 1-2 orders of magnitude after rail electrification but are well below limits in all applicable human exposure safety standards.