Sustained Attention Research & Training to

Reduce Human Factor Caused Train Accidents

by Ron Robusto

The railroad industry is beginning to see the benefits of the Federal Railroad Administration’s partnership with Transdev (formerly Veolia Transportation) in a recently completed research and development project on cognitive distraction and reducing major rule violations in commuter rail operations. As a result of the study’s conclusive findings, the Sustained Attention Training Program was developed by Transdev with the objective of offering training across the industry to reduce human factor caused train accidents.

The Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers partnered with Transdev for the research portion of the project. The BLE provided thirty-six locomotive engineers who operated the locomotive simulator that is part of the FRA’s Cab Technology Integration Laboratory in Cambridge, MA. The research included testing and analyzing locomotive engineers under various scenarios. A control group of locomotive engineers was provided basic training on everything required to operate the simulator safely and effectively. A second group of locomotive engineers was provided the same basic training PLUS a short module on the science of distraction and how it affects performance.

The results were significant and meaningful for our industry. The second group performed better by a margin ranging from 7.1% to 11.2% in the various subjectively measured areas that were analyzed. The research clearly validated the effectiveness of minimal training on the science of distraction. However, we expect an even higher level of performance of locomotive engineers, as well as other safety critical employees, with a more structured and recurring training approach.

This research reveals real opportunityto improve safety in our industry. I strongly believe Transdev’s Sustained Attention Training program will make a significant and positive difference in reducing human factor caused train accidents. The training consists of four key modules: Your Safety Culture; The Science of Cognitive Distraction; Signs and Symptoms of Loss of Attentiveness; and Solutions and Strategies for Fighting Distraction. The curriculum is designed to fully engage students in all four modules and will be reinforced with additional tools and processes. We currently are piloting the training program within our company over the course of this year, and intend to roll it out and make it available to the entire rail industry in 2016.

For more information about the progress of this study and training initiative, please contact Ron Robusto, COO and VP Safety and Compliance, TransDev, at ron.robusto@transdev.com. 

This blog was authored by by Ron Robusto, Chief Operating Officer and VP Safety and Compliance- Rail Division, TransDev, and 2nd Vice President of AARS

 

Upcoming events

    • 23 Jul 2017
    • 5:00 PM (CDT)
    • 25 Jul 2017
    • 11:00 AM (CDT)
    • Chase Park Plaza Hotel, 212 Kingshighway Blvd, St. Louis, MO 63108

    Save the date for the AARS 121st Annual Meeting, July 23-25, 2017 at the Chase Park Plaza Hotel, 212 Kingshighway Blvd, St. Louis, MO 63108

    The meeting will open with a reception on Sunday, July 23 at 5:00 p.m.

    AARS will host the Progressive Railroading Rising Stars Award Dinner as part of the AARS Annual Meeting on Sunday, July 23 at 6:30 p.m.

    Registration to the AARS Annual Meeting includes a ticket to the Rising Stars dinner.  For more information about the Rising Stars dinner, visit http://www.progressiverailroading.com/risingstars/about.asp

    The meeting program will continue Monday, July 24 at 8:00 a.m. and will conclude on Tuesday, July 25 at 11:00 a.m. 

    Register Now!

    Golf Outing:  On Tuesday, July 25, the AARS will hold its annual golf outing to benefit the AARS Scholarship Fund at the Far Oaks Golf Course.  Visit www.faroaksgolf.com to learn more about the course.  Registration for the golf outing is now open

    Hotel Information

    The meeting will be held at the historic Chase Park Plaza Hotel.  Obtain the special room rate of $172/night by calling the hotel directly and mentioning AARS.

    The hotel will begin accepting reservations after October 30, 2016.

    212 Kingshighway Blvd, St. Louis, MO 63108

    (314) 633-3000

    Sunday, July 23

    5:00 pm Opening Reception and Technical Showcase

    6:30 pm Progressive Railroading Rising Stars Awards and Dinner

    Monday, July 24

    7:00 am Continental Breakfast and Technical Showcase

    8:00 am Charge to Superintendents

    Matt Rose, Executive Chairman, BNSF

    9:00 am Break in Technical Showcase

    9:30 am Regional Perspective

    10:30 am

    Day to Day Management:

    • -          Training new hires
    • -          Dealing with difficult managers/employees

    11:45 am Break in Technical Showcase

    12:00 Annual Industry Luncheon

    Lantern Awards

    1:15 Challenges Facing New Managers

    Panel

    2:45 p.m. Break in Technical Showcase

    3:15 pm Instilling the Railroad Culture in New Employees

    Panel

    4:30 p.m. Michigan State University Railway Certificate Course Alumni Presentation

    5:00 pm Adjourn and MSU Railway Certificate Course Alumni Reception

    Tuesday, July 25

    7:00 am Continental Breakfast and Technical Showcase

    7:00 am Continental Breakfast and Technical

    Showcase 

    8:00 am Developing a Safety Culture

    Panel

    Note:  Derailment Investigation Seminar attendees are invited to participate in the 8:00 a.m. session

    9:15 am Break in Technical Showcase

    9:45 am Market Outlook

    10:30 amBusiness Session

    11:00 am Adjourn

    Bus departs to Far Oaks Golf Club for the AARS Annual Golf Outing to benefit the Frank J. Richter Scholarship

    Register for the Golf Outing!


    • 25 Jul 2017
    • 8:00 AM (CDT)
    • 26 Jul 2017
    • 5:00 PM (CDT)
    • Chase Park Plaza Hotel 212 Kingshighway Blvd, St. Louis, MO 63108

    Gary Wolf, President, Wolf Railway Consulting, offers valuable derailment investigation information you can’t get elsewhere. Click here to view agenda.

    Railroad managers, superintendents, engineers, trainmasters and others gain a working knowledge of basic track structure, performance, causes of common problems; examination of detail on axle loads, traffic density, operating speeds; optimal learning potential with presentations on railroad turnouts, crossings with details handling spots and much more.

    Participants of the two-day seminar will receive a certificate of completion along with a binder full of course content to share with colleagues.

    Hotel Information

    The seminar will be held at the Chase Park Plaza in St. Louis, MO.  Please make your hotel reservations directly with the hotel at the phone number listed below.  The special room rate for AARS Derailment Investigation Seminar attendees is $172/night.  To access this rate, please mention your participation in the AARS seminar.  

    The hotel will begin accepting reservations after October 30, 2016.

    212 Kingshighway Blvd, St. Louis, MO 63108

    (314) 633-3000


    • 25 Jul 2017
    • 1:00 PM (CDT)
    • Far Oaks Golf Club 419 Old Collinsville Road, Caseyville, IL 62232

    The AARS will host a golf outing during the AARS 121st Annual Meeting in a suburb of     St. Louis, MO -- Caseyville, IL -- on Tuesday, July 25, 2017.

    Proceeds from the outing will benefit the Frank J. Richter Scholarship Fund which provides educational scholarships to undergraduate and graduate students. 

    Shotgun start: 1:00 p.m.

    Registration opens at 12:00 p.m.

    Dinner:  6:00 p.m.

    Registration is now open!  Take advantage of the early bird rate of $140 per player or $560 per foursome before May 15. Click here to print out a hard copy registration form, or click on the Register Online now below for online registration

    Register online now!

    Additional prize fund:  to contribute funds to for additional prizes, click here.  The additional prize fund contribution link is not on the registration page.  

    The AARS Annual Golf Outing will be held at the conclusion of the AARS 121st Annual Meeting in St. Louis.  Event registration is $140 per person and includes green fees, cart, refreshments, box lunch, dinner after golf, and a prize for every participant. Golf outing registration is NOT included with registration for the 121st Annual Meeting.

    Register as an individual player or as a foursome. 

    Proceeds of the event will benefit the Frank J. Richter Scholarship Fund.

    Need to rent clubs?  Contact the course directly:

    Far Oaks Golf Club

    419 Old Collinsville Road, Caseyville, IL 62232

    Phone: 618-628-2900 

    golf@faroaksgolf.com
    www.faroaksgolf.com

    Transportation from the Annual Meeting at the Chase Park Plaza Hotel to the course and return to the hotel is complimentary with your registration.  You do not need to be an AARS member, nor do you have to register for the Annual Meeting to participate in the golf outing.  Golf outing registration is NOT included with 121st Annual Meeting registration.

    Questions?

    Contact Carrie Foor at 331-643-3369. 




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