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American Association of
Railroad Superintendents

Meetings/Seminars Calendar

Here you can find out about upcoming events and view photo galleries of past events. Some events may allow for online registration and the ticket purchase. Click the event name to view more details.

Upcoming events

    • 05 Jun 2019
    • 8:00 AM
    • 06 Jun 2019
    • 5:00 PM
    • Sheraton O'Hare 6501 Mannheim Rd, Rosemont, IL 60018
    • 62

    This 2-day seminar will provide education regarding human factor issues related to accident causation.  The seminar is hosted in partnership between AARS and the International Assocation of Railway Operating Officers (IAROO).

    The first day is presented by Gary Wolf, President, Wolf Railway Consulting, the rail industry's preeminent expert on railroad accident investigation and causation. The second day is presented by Randy Jamieson, and Dr. Daniel Smilek, PhD, Principals of Atticus Consulting Group LLC. Randy has 30+ years of experience in railway operations and safety. Dr. Smilek is a leading researcher of human attention.  Together they will present the Comprehensive Attention Performance Training Program (“CAPT Program”) as outlined below.

    NOTE:  Registration is limited!  Register early to secure your spot.

    AARS and IAROO retain the right to deny registration to attendees who are not members of either organization and/or are not directly responsible for operations functions within the rail industry.  

    Registration Fee:  $749 for AARS and IAROO members, $849 for non members and includes the two-day seminar with lunch each day.  (AARS annual membership is $75.)

    AARS members register by logging in via this site.  IAROO members should select the IAROO member option after they obtain a special code for registration from IAROO.  

    Quantity Discount:  For every 5 registrants, get one registration free.  

    Questions:  Call Carrie Foor, AARS Executive Director, 331-643-3369

    Hotel:  The seminar will be held at the Sheraton Suites Chicago O'Hare, 6501 Mannheim, Rosemont, IL

    Book Your Room

    You may also call the hotel directly to make your reservation at 847-699-6300.  Mention AARS to get the special AARS/IAROO rate of $169/night.  Make sure to book your room by May 17 to get this rate.

    Seminar Topics:

    Day 1. Agenda – Presented by Gary Wolf

          The nature of human failure
          Overview of top human factor causes
          Statistical review of where we are in the rail industry with human failure
          The old way vs. new way of dealing with human failure
          The role of discipline in human failure accidents
          Failures of typical investigative techniques
          Looking at the organization as a source of human failure
          What is a safety culture
          Safety leadership What are the tenets of good safety leadership
          Safety Management Systems (SMS)
          Behavior Based Safety (BBS)
          Root Cause Analysis of Human Factor Accidents
          Detailed walk through for conducting investigation of human failure incidents
          The importance of rules testing and how to make good rule tests
          Tips for prevention of typical human failure derailments/incidents
          Case study Class tabletop simulation of a human factor accident investigation

    Day 2. Agenda - Presented by Randy Jamieson and Dr. Dan Smilek

    The CAPT Program consists of eleven (11) interrelated modules that build on one another to introduce and explain key aspects of the science of human attention and their underlying role as root cause of human factors-related accidents and injuries. These modules are as follows:   

     1.       Introduction to Human Attention-related Railroad Accidents

    2.       Limits of Visual Perception

    3.       Limits of Human Spatial Attention

    4.       Dangers of Operation Overload and Multitasking

    5.       Dangers of Operational Underload and Mind Wandering

    6.       The Link Between Stress and Human Attention

    7.       Worry, Rumination and Unfinished Tasks and How They Affect Attention Performance

    8.       How Habits Can be Exploited by Unusual Situations to Create Attention-related Errors

    9.       Fatigue, Nutrition, Exercise and Their Role in Attention Performance

    10.    Training Attention Control

    11.    Deliberate Practice and the Power of Intrinsic Motivation

    Feedback from Participants the CAPTÔ Program:

    “I’ve attended a lot of training programs over the years, really a lot, and this is the best training I have ever had!”

    …. Railroad Manager

    “This is not just a tool.  This is integral to better living!”

     …. Locomotive Engineer

    “Management really needs to understand the importance of this work.  There is a need to provide this education to managers so that they know how attention works”.  “

    …. Railroad Manager

    • 22 Jul 2019
    • 5:00 PM (CDT)
    • 24 Jul 2019
    • 11:00 AM (CDT)
    • Norfolk, VA

    Save the date for the AARS 123rd Annual Meeting, July 22-24, 2019 at the Hilton in Norfolk, VA.

    The meeting will open with a reception on Monday, July 22 at 5:00 p.m.

    AARS will host the Progressive Railroading Rising Stars Award Dinner as part of the AARS Annual Meeting on Monday, July 22 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 Tueday, July 23 at 8:00 a.m. and will conclude on Wednesday, July 24 at 11:00 a.m. 

    Register Now!

    Golf Outing:  On Wednesday, July 24, the AARS will hold its annual golf outing to benefit the AARS Scholarship Fund.  More details to come.

    Hotel Information

    The meeting will be held in downtown Norfolk at the Hilton on the Main, 100 East Main Street, Norfolk, Virginia, 23510, USA+1-757-763-6200.

    Room Rate:  $179/night   Make your reservation by July 1, 2019 to get this special rate!

    Make your reservation here:

    Book Your Room

    Monday, July 22

    Industry Tour of Norfolk Harbor! 2 p.m. - 4 p.m.

    5:00 pm Opening Reception and Technical Showcase

    6:30 pm Progressive Railroading Rising Stars Awards and Dinner

    Tuesday, July 23

    7:00 am Continental Breakfast and Technical Showcase

    8:00 am Keynote Speaker

    Jim Squires, President, CEO & Executive Chairman, Norfolk Southern

    9:00 am Break in Technical Showcase

    9:30 am Regional Perspective

    David Gooden, Norfolk Southern

    10:15 am Panel Presentation: Precision Scheduled Railroading

    -          Derek Taylor, VP Southern Region, CN (Invited)

    -          Dave Ferryman, VP Commercial & Technology, EVRAZ N.A. (confirmed)

    -          Mike Farrell, SVP Transportation, Norfolk Southern (Invited)

    11:45 am Break in Technical Showcase 

    12:00 Annual Industry Luncheon & Lantern Awards 

    Charge to Superintendents

    Ed Harris, EVP Operations, CSX

    1:15  Onboarding a Shortline

    Stefan Loeb, EVP and Chief Commercial Officer, Watco Companies

    Nicole Moore, Director of Human Resources and Industrial Relations,Indiana Harbor Belt RR

    John Rickoff – President & CEO Lake State Railway

    Mark Rosner – President & CEO Carload Express

    2:00   Economic Outlook 

    2:45 p.m. Break in Technical Showcase 

    3:15 pm Rising Stars Panel: Achieving Success in the Rail Industry

    4:15 p.m. Update on the “Railroad Renaissance” Tony Hatch, ABH Consulting

    Wednesday, July 24

    7:00 am Continental Breakfast and Technical Showcase in Great Room, 6th floor

     8:00 am   Attracting & Retaining New Employees

    Darl Farris, Director Watco Univ.

    Representatives from: Genesee & Wyoming, Norfolk Southern

    9:00 a.m.  Enhancing Your Safety Culture within Your Railroad – Panel

    Darrell Snyder, VP Mechanical, IHBRR

    Representatives from:  Florida East Coast Railway


    Norfolk Southern

    10:30 am Business Session

    11:00 am Adjourn

    11:30 pm Bus Loads for Annual Golf Outing, departing at 11:50 a.m.

    1:15 p.m. Shotgun Start –

    10:30 am Business Session

    11:00 am Adjourn

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

    • 05 Nov 2019
    • 8:00 AM (EST)
    • 06 Nov 2019
    • 5:00 PM (EST)
    • Sheraton Suites Chicago O'Hare

    Gary Wolf, President, Wolf Railway Consulting, offers valuable derailment investigation information you can’t get elsewhere.  Click here to view seminar 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 Sheraton Suites Chicago O'Hare.  

    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 $149/night.  To access this rate, please mention your participation in the AARS seminar and make your reservation prior to October 14.  

    Sheraton Chicago O'Hare

    Address: 6501 Mannheim Rd, Rosemont, IL 60018

    Phone(847) 699-6300

    Registrants must be employed in the rail industry and meet qualifications for AARS membership to register for this seminar.

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