Technical Reports

Railroad Dispatcher Communications Training Materials

  • 01
  • Jan
  • 2003
AUTHOR: Federal Railroad Administration; Judith Gertier; Sarah Acton
OFFICE: RPD
REPORT NUMBER: DOT/FRA/ORD-03/12
SUBJECT: Human Factors
KEYWORDS: Train dispatcher, Readback, Hearback, Listening, Memory
ABSTRACT: Readback/hearback errors by railroad dispatcher and train crews or other track users can potentially result in accidents and derailments. The training materials developed under this project are designed to improve dispatcher communication skills with the goal of reducing the occurrence of readback/hearback errors. The course is based on a similar one developed and offered to air traffic controllers by the Federal Aviation Administration. The basic structure of the FAA course was adapted to be applicable to railroad dispatcher. The course has 9 topics including 'Barriers to Communication', 'Listening Skills' and 'Memory Skills'. The course materials include a course protest to assess initial skills, a formative assessment to assess progress after the first day of training and a summative test to evaluate the instructor's guide and all written training materials. An accompanying videotape contains the complementary auditory exercises.
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