ASLRRA names JR Sampson as coordinator for Short Line Safety Institute

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WASHINGTON – The American Short Line and Regional Railroad Association has selected JR Sampson to serve in a key role helping to create the pilot project for the first step to establishing the Short Line Safety Institute.

Sampson, former vice president of safety and rules at Denver-based OmniTrax and a past ASLRRA Safety Professional of the Year, will head up an initial assignment resulting in both the creation of a training module and selection and training of safety assessment professionals for the pilot project. The project is made possible through the coordination of the ASLRRA, the Federal Railroad Administration, the University of Connecticut, and the Volpe National Transportation Systems Center. This will be a critical step toward the longer-range goal of developing a comprehensive industry-wide safety culture and safety compliance assessment program that will serve as the core of the Short Line Safety Institute.

Association Chairman Ed McKechnie says, “The Safety Institute is a top line priority for ASLRRA and reflects the short line industry’s dedication and leadership on an issue of critical importance to communities, shippers and railroads. We look forward to working with JR on this critical initial assignment.”

“Safety is our number priority and as the chief safety regulator for the rail industry, I know the regulations and enforcement alone cannot be the sole driver of continuous safety improvement,” says Federal Railroad Administrator Joe Szabo. “Through this partnership with the Short Line Safety Institute we will forge a pro-active approach to safety -- from the ground up – that will transform the safety culture of railroads.”

The Safety Institute is the direct result of a proposal the ASLRRA presented to U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx, in January 2014 as a step toward improving safety for crude oil shipments by rail.

NEWSWIRETrains News Wire

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