Other Reports

Phase I Literature Search and Evaluation - Final Report

  • 23
  • Feb
  • 1996
AUTHOR: Federal Railroad Administration
SUBJECT: Evaluation
KEYWORDS: Literature Review, Railroad Technology, Regulations
ABSTRACT: [From the Introduction] Since 1985, the AAR/TTC and other organizations have utilized a set of guidelines developed by the AAR in the late 1970's to teach emergency response personnel how to make judgements in the field as to the severity of damage to tank cars involved in accidents. These guidelines were developed to help emergency responders decide when tank cars carrying hazardous materials shipped under pressure can be safely rerailed, unloaded in place, or whether nature should be left to take its course. Recently, the guidelines were reviewed to determine how or if they were validated. After consulting with experts in the tank car, railroad, and chemical industries, it has been determined that the guidelines were developed by several individuals who are no longer available to substantiate them. To better ensure the safety of emergency response personnel and the public-at-large, responders need some sound, qualitative evaluation techniques which they can safely and reliably use to make these decisions. Compiling this information in an easy to understand handbook to assist emergency response personnel make critical decisions is an important effort that will significantly improve the safety of such operations. Phase I of the project focuses on evaluating the technical foundation for the guidelines. A search of the technical literature was performed and subsequently evaluated to identify which of the guidelines can be validated and which require additional modeling and validation in the Phase II effort. In this report and accompanying attachments, the results of the literature search and evaluation are presented and recommendations for the Phase II research are made.