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110th Congress                                                   Report
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 1st Session                                                    110-336

======================================================================



 
            FEDERAL RAILROAD SAFETY IMPROVEMENT ACT OF 2007

                                _______
                                

 September 19, 2007.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on 
            the State of the Union and ordered to be printed

                                _______
                                

Mr. Oberstar, from the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, 
                        submitted the following

                              R E P O R T

                        [To accompany H.R. 2095]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

  The Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, to whom 
was referred the bill (H.R. 2095) to amend title 49, United 
States Code, to prevent railroad fatalities, injuries, and 
hazardous materials releases, to authorize the Federal Railroad 
Safety Administration, and for other purposes, having 
considered the same, report favorably thereon with an amendment 
and recommend that the bill as amended do pass.

  The amendment is as follows:
  Strike all after the enacting clause and insert the 
following:

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE; TABLE OF CONTENTS.

  (a) Short Title.--This Act may be cited as the ``Federal Railroad 
Safety Improvement Act of 2007''.
  (b) Table of Contents.--The table of contents for this Act is as 
follows:

Sec. 1. Short title; table of contents.
Sec. 2. Definitions.

            TITLE I--FEDERAL RAILROAD SAFETY ADMINISTRATION

Sec. 101. Establishment of Federal Railroad Safety Administration.
Sec. 102. Railroad safety strategy.
Sec. 103. Reports.
Sec. 104. Rulemaking process.
Sec. 105. Authorization of appropriations.

                       TITLE II--EMPLOYEE FATIGUE

Sec. 201. Hours of service reform.
Sec. 202. Employee sleeping quarters.
Sec. 203. Fatigue management plans.
Sec. 204. Regulatory authority.
Sec. 205. Conforming amendment.

            TITLE III--PROTECTION OF EMPLOYEES AND WITNESSES

Sec. 301. Employee protections.

                       TITLE IV--GRADE CROSSINGS

Sec. 401. Toll-free number to report grade crossing problems.
Sec. 402. Roadway user sight distance at highway-rail grade crossings.
Sec. 403. Grade crossing signal violations.
Sec. 404. National crossing inventory.
Sec. 405. Accident and incident reporting.
Sec. 406. Authority to buy promotional items to improve railroad 
crossing safety and prevent railroad trespass.
Sec. 407. Operation Lifesaver.
Sec. 408. State action plan.
Sec. 409. Fostering introduction of new technology to improve safety at 
highway-rail grade crossings.

                          TITLE V--ENFORCEMENT

Sec. 501. Enforcement.
Sec. 502. Civil penalties.
Sec. 503. Criminal penalties.
Sec. 504. Expansion of emergency order authority.
Sec. 505. Enforcement transparency.
Sec. 506. Interfering with or hampering safety investigations.
Sec. 507. Railroad radio monitoring authority.
Sec. 508. Inspector staffing.

                   TITLE VI--MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

Sec. 601. Positive train control systems.
Sec. 602. Warning in nonsignaled territory.
Sec. 603. Track safety.
Sec. 604. Certification of conductors.
Sec. 605. Minimum training standards.
Sec. 606. Prompt medical attention.
Sec. 607. Emergency escape breathing apparatus.
Sec. 608. Locomotive cab environment.
Sec. 609. Tunnel information.
Sec. 610. Railroad police.
Sec. 611. Museum locomotive study.
Sec. 612. Certification of carmen.
Sec. 613. Train control systems deployment grants.
Sec. 614. Infrastructure safety investment reports.
Sec. 615. Emergency grade crossing safety improvements.
Sec. 616. Clarifications regarding State law causes of action.

          TITLE VII--RAIL PASSENGER DISASTER FAMILY ASSISTANCE

Sec. 701. Short title.
Sec. 702. Assistance by National Transportation Safety Board to 
families of passengers involved in rail passenger accidents.
Sec. 703. Rail passenger carrier plans to address needs of families of 
passengers involved in rail passenger accidents.
Sec. 704. Establishment of task force.

SEC. 2. DEFINITIONS.

  For purposes of this Act, the terms ``railroad'' and ``railroad 
carrier'' have the meaning given those terms in section 20102 of title 
49, United States Code.

            TITLE I--FEDERAL RAILROAD SAFETY ADMINISTRATION

SEC. 101. ESTABLISHMENT OF FEDERAL RAILROAD SAFETY ADMINISTRATION.

  (a) Amendment.--Section 103 of title 49, United States Code, is 
amended to read as follows:

``Sec. 103. Federal Railroad Safety Administration

  ``(a) In General.--The Federal Railroad Safety Administration (in 
this section referred to as the `Administration') shall be an 
administration in the Department of Transportation. To carry out all 
railroad safety laws of the United States, the Administration shall be 
divided on a geographical basis into at least 8 safety offices. The 
Secretary of Transportation shall be responsible for enforcing those 
laws and for ensuring that those laws are uniformly administered and 
enforced among the safety offices.
  ``(b) Safety as Highest Priority.--In carrying out its duties, the 
Administration shall consider the assignment and maintenance of safety 
as the highest priority, recognizing the clear intent, encouragement, 
and dedication of Congress to the furtherance of the highest degree of 
safety in railroad transportation.
  ``(c) Administrator.--The head of the Administration shall be the 
Administrator who shall be appointed by the President, by and with the 
advice and consent of the Senate, and shall be an individual with 
professional experience in railroad safety, hazardous materials safety, 
or other transportation safety. The Administrator shall report directly 
to the Secretary of Transportation.
  ``(d) Deputy Administrator.--The Administration shall have a Deputy 
Administrator who shall be appointed by the Secretary. The Deputy 
Administrator shall carry out duties and powers prescribed by the 
Administrator.
  ``(e) Chief Safety Officer.--The Administration shall have an 
Associate Administrator for Railroad Safety appointed in the 
competitive service by the Secretary. The Associate Administrator shall 
be the Chief Safety Officer of the Administration. The Associate 
Administrator shall carry out the duties and powers prescribed by the 
Administrator.
  ``(f) Duties and Powers of the Administrator.--The Administrator 
shall carry out--
          ``(1) duties and powers related to railroad safety vested in 
        the Secretary by section 20134(c) and chapters 203 through 211 
        of this title, and by chapter 213 of this title for carrying 
        out chapters 203 through 211; and
          ``(2) other duties and powers prescribed by the Secretary.
  ``(g) Limitation.--A duty or power specified in subsection (f)(1) may 
be transferred to another part of the Department of Transportation or 
another Federal Government entity only when specifically provided by 
law. A decision of the Administrator in carrying out the duties or 
powers of the Administration and involving notice and hearing required 
by law is administratively final.
  ``(h) Authorities.--Subject to the provisions of subtitle I of title 
40 and title III of the Federal Property and Administrative Services 
Act of 1949 (41 U.S.C. 251 et seq.), the Secretary of Transportation 
may make, enter into, and perform such contracts, grants, leases, 
cooperative agreements, and other similar transactions with Federal or 
other public agencies (including State and local governments) and 
private organizations and persons, and make such payments, by way of 
advance or reimbursement, as the Secretary may determine to be 
necessary or appropriate to carry out functions at the Administration. 
The authority of the Secretary granted by this subsection shall be 
carried out by the Administrator. Notwithstanding any other provision 
of this chapter, no authority to enter into contracts or to make 
payments under this subsection shall be effective, except as provided 
for in appropriations Acts.''.
  (b) References and Conforming Amendments.--(1) All references in 
Federal law to the Federal Railroad Administration shall be deemed to 
be references to the Federal Railroad Safety Administration.
  (2) The item relating to section 103 in the table of sections of 
chapter 1 of title 49, United States Code, is amended to read as 
follows:

``103. Federal Railroad Safety Administration.''.

SEC. 102. RAILROAD SAFETY STRATEGY.

  (a) Safety Goals.--In conjunction with existing federally required 
strategic planning efforts, the Secretary of Transportation shall 
develop a long-term strategy for improving railroad safety. The 
strategy shall include an annual plan and schedule for achieving, at a 
minimum, the following goals:
          (1) Reducing the number and rates of accidents, injuries, and 
        fatalities involving railroads.
          (2) Improving the consistency and effectiveness of 
        enforcement and compliance programs.
          (3) Identifying and targeting enforcement at, and safety 
        improvements to, high-risk highway-rail grade crossings.
          (4) Improving research efforts to enhance and promote 
        railroad safety and performance.
  (b) Resource Needs.--The strategy and annual plans shall include 
estimates of the funds and staff resources needed to accomplish each 
activity. Such estimates shall also include the staff skills and 
training needed for timely and effective accomplishment of each goal.
  (c) Submission With the President's Budget.--The Secretary of 
Transportation shall submit to the Committee on Transportation and 
Infrastructure of the House of Representatives and the Committee on 
Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate the strategy and 
annual plan at the same time as the President's budget submission.
  (d) Achievement of Goals.--
          (1) Progress assessment.--No less frequently than 
        semiannually, the Secretary of Transportation and the 
        Administrator of the Federal Railroad Safety Administration 
        shall assess the progress of the Administration toward 
        achieving the strategic goals described in subsection (a). The 
        Secretary and the Administrator shall convey their assessment 
        to the employees of the Federal Railroad Safety Administration 
        and shall identify any deficiencies that should be remediated 
        before the next progress assessment.
          (2) Report to congress.--The Secretary shall transmit a 
        report annually to the Committee on Transportation and 
        Infrastructure of the House of Representatives and the 
        Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the 
        Senate on the performance of the Federal Railroad Safety 
        Administration relative to the goals of the railroad safety 
        strategy and annual plans under subsection (a).

SEC. 103. REPORTS.

  (a) Reports by the Inspector General.--Not later than 30 days after 
the date of enactment of this Act, the Inspector General of the 
Department of Transportation shall submit to the Secretary of 
Transportation and the Administrator of the Federal Railroad Safety 
Administration a report containing the following:
          (1) A list of each statutory mandate regarding railroad 
        safety that has not been implemented.
          (2) A list of each open safety recommendation made by the 
        National Transportation Safety Board or the Inspector General 
        regarding railroad safety.
  (b) Reports by the Secretary.--
          (1) Statutory mandates.--Not later than 90 days after the 
        date of enactment of this Act, and every 180 days thereafter 
        until each of the mandates referred to in subsection (a)(1) has 
        been implemented, the Secretary of Transportation shall 
        transmit to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure 
        of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, 
        Science, and Transportation of the Senate a report on the 
        specific actions taken to implement such mandates.
          (2) NTSB and inspector general recommendations.--Not later 
        than January 1st of each year, the Secretary of Transportation 
        shall transmit to the Committee on Transportation and 
        Infrastructure of the House of Representatives and the 
        Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the 
        Senate a report containing each recommendation referred to in 
        subsection (a)(2), a copy of the Department of Transportation 
        response to each such recommendation, and a progress report on 
        implementing each such recommendation.

SEC. 104. RULEMAKING PROCESS.

  (a) Amendment.--Subchapter I of chapter 201 of title 49, United 
States Code, is amended by inserting after section 20115 the following 
new section:

``Sec. 20116. Rulemaking process

  ``No rule or order issued by the Secretary under this part shall be 
effective if it incorporates by reference a code, rule, standard, 
requirement, or practice issued by an association or other entity that 
is not an agency of the Federal Government, unless that reference is to 
a particular code, rule, standard, requirement, or practice adopted 
before the date on which the rule is issued by the Secretary, and 
unless the date on which the code, rule, standard, requirement, or 
practice was adopted is specifically cited in the rule.''.
  (b) Table of Sections Amendment.--The table of sections of subchapter 
I of chapter 201 of title 49, United States Code, is amended by adding 
after the item relating to section 20115 the following new item:

``20116. Rulemaking process.''.

SEC. 105. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.

  Section 20117(a) of title 49, United States Code, is amended to read 
as follows:
  ``(a) In General.--(1) There are authorized to be appropriated to the 
Secretary of Transportation to carry out this part and to carry out 
responsibilities under chapter 51 as delegated or authorized by the 
Secretary--
          ``(A) $230,000,000 for fiscal year 2008;
          ``(B) $260,000,000 for fiscal year 2009;
          ``(C) $295,000,000 for fiscal year 2010; and
          ``(D) $335,000,000 for fiscal year 2011.
  ``(2) With amounts appropriated pursuant to paragraph (1), the 
Secretary shall purchase 6 Gage Restraint Measurement System vehicles 
and 5 track geometry vehicles to enable the deployment of 1 Gage 
Restraint Measurement System vehicle and 1 track geometry vehicle in 
each region.
  ``(3) There are authorized to be appropriated to the Secretary 
$18,000,000 for the period encompassing fiscal years 2008 through 2011 
to design, develop, and construct the Facility for Underground Rail 
Station and Tunnel at the Transportation Technology Center in Pueblo, 
Colorado. The facility shall be used to test and evaluate the 
vulnerabilities of above-ground and underground rail tunnels to prevent 
accidents and incidents in such tunnels, to mitigate and remediate the 
consequences of any such accidents or incidents, and to provide a 
realistic scenario for training emergency responders.
  ``(4) Such sums as may be necessary from the amount appropriated 
pursuant to paragraph (1) for each of the fiscal years 2008 through 
2011 shall be made available to the Secretary for personnel in regional 
offices and in Washington, D.C., whose duties primarily involve rail 
security.''.

                       TITLE II--EMPLOYEE FATIGUE

SEC. 201. HOURS OF SERVICE REFORM.

  (a) Definitions.--Section 21101(4) of title 49, United States Code, 
is amended by striking ``employed by a railroad carrier''.
  (b) Limitation on Duty Hours of Signal Employees.--Section 21104 of 
title 49, United States Code, is amended--
          (1) by amending subsection (a) to read as follows:
  ``(a) General.--Except as provided in subsection (c) of this section, 
a railroad carrier and its officers and agents may not require or allow 
a signal employee, and a railroad contractor and its officers and 
agents may not require or allow a signal employee, to remain or go on 
duty--
          ``(1) unless that employee has had at least 10 consecutive 
        hours off duty during the prior 24 hours;
          ``(2) for a period in excess of 12 consecutive hours; or
          ``(3) unless that employee has had at least one period of at 
        least 24 consecutive hours off duty in the past 7 consecutive 
        days.
The Secretary may waive paragraph (3) if a collective bargaining 
agreement provides a different arrangement and such arrangement 
provides an equivalent level of safety.'';
          (2) in subsection (b)(3) by striking ``, except that up to 
        one hour of that time spent returning from the final trouble 
        call of a period of continuous or broken service is time off 
        duty'';
          (3) in subsection (c)--
                  (A) by inserting ``for not more than 3 days during a 
                period of 7 consecutive days'' after ``24 consecutive 
                hours''; and
                  (B) by adding at the end the following: ``A signal 
                employee may not be allowed to remain or go on duty 
                under the emergency authority provided under this 
                subsection to conduct routine repairs, routine 
                maintenance, or routine inspection of signal 
                systems.'';
          (4) by adding at the end the following new subsections:
  ``(d) Communication During Time Off Duty.--During a signal employee's 
minimum off-duty period of 10 consecutive hours, as provided under 
subsection (a), a railroad carrier, and its managers, supervisors, 
officers, and agents, shall not communicate with the signal employee by 
telephone, by pager, or in any other manner that could disrupt the 
employee's rest. Nothing in this subsection shall prohibit 
communication necessary to notify an employee of an emergency situation 
posing potential risks to the employee's safety or health.
  ``(e) Exclusivity.--The hours of service, duty hours, and rest 
periods of signal employees shall be governed exclusively by this 
chapter. Signal employees operating motor vehicles shall not be subject 
to any hours of service rules, duty hours, or rest period rules 
promulgated by any Federal authority, including the Federal Motor 
Carrier Safety Administration, other than the Federal Railroad Safety 
Administration.''.
  (c) Limitation on Duty Hours of Train Employees.--Section 21103 of 
title 49, United States Code, is amended--
          (1) by amending subsection (a) to read as follows:
  ``(a) General.--Except as provided in subsection (c) of this section, 
a railroad carrier and its officers and agents may not require or allow 
a train employee to remain or go on duty--
          ``(1) unless that employee has had at least 10 consecutive 
        hours off duty during the prior 24 hours;
          ``(2) for a period in excess of 12 consecutive hours; or
          ``(3) unless that employee has had at least one period of at 
        least 24 consecutive hours off duty in the past 7 consecutive 
        days.
The Secretary may waive paragraph (3) if a collective bargaining 
agreement provides a different arrangement and such arrangement 
provides an equivalent level of safety.'';
          (2) by amending subsection (b)(4) to read as follows:
          ``(4)(A)(i) Except as provided in clauses (ii) and (iii), 
        time spent in deadhead transportation to a duty assignment, 
        time spent waiting for deadhead transportation, and time spent 
        in deadhead transportation from a duty assignment to a place of 
        final release is time on duty.
          ``(ii) Time spent waiting for deadhead transportation and 
        time spent in deadhead transportation from a duty assignment to 
        a place of final release is neither time on duty nor time off 
        duty in situations involving delays in the operations of the 
        railroad carrier, when the delays were caused by any of the 
        following:
                  ``(I) A casualty.
                  ``(II) An accident.
                  ``(III) A track obstruction.
                  ``(IV) An act of God.
                  ``(V) A weather event causing a delay.
                  ``(VI) A snowstorm.
                  ``(VII) A landslide.
                  ``(VIII) A track or bridge washout.
                  ``(IX) A derailment.
                  ``(X) A major equipment failure which prevents a 
                train from advancing.
                  ``(XI) Other delay from a cause unknown or 
                unforeseeable to a railroad carrier and its officers 
                and agents in charge of the employee when the employee 
                left a designated terminal.
          ``(iii) In addition to any time qualifying as neither on duty 
        nor off duty under clause (ii), at the election of the railroad 
        carrier, time spent waiting for deadhead transportation and 
        time spent in deadhead transportation to the place of final 
        release may be treated as neither time on duty nor time off 
        duty, subject to the following limitations:
                  ``(I) Not more than 40 hours a month may be elected 
                by the railroad carrier, for an employee, during the 
                period from the date of enactment of the Federal 
                Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007 to one year 
                after such date of enactment.
                  ``(II) Not more than 30 hours a month may be elected 
                by the railroad carrier, for an employee, during the 
                period beginning one year after the date of enactment 
                of the Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007 
                and ending two years after such date of enactment.
                  ``(III) Not more than 10 hours a month may be elected 
                by the railroad carrier, for an employee, during the 
                period beginning two years after the date of enactment 
                of the Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007.
          ``(B) Each railroad carrier shall report to the Secretary of 
        Transportation, in accordance with procedures contained in 49 
        CFR 228.19, each instance within 30 days after the calendar 
        month in which the instance occurs that a member of a train or 
        engine crew or other employee engaged in or connected with the 
        movement of any train, including a hostler, exceeds 12 
        consecutive hours, including--
                  ``(i) time on duty; and
                  ``(ii) time spent waiting for deadhead transportation 
                and the time spent in deadhead transportation from a 
                duty assignment to the place of final release, that is 
                not time on duty.
          ``(C) If--
                  ``(i) the time spent waiting for deadhead 
                transportation, and the time spent in deadhead 
                transportation from a duty assignment to the place of 
                final release, that is not time on duty; plus
                  ``(ii) the time on duty,
        exceeds 12 consecutive hours, the railroad carrier and its 
        officers and agents shall provide the train employee with 
        additional time off duty equal to the number of hours that such 
        sum exceeds 12 hours.''; and
          (3) by adding at the end the following new subsection:
  ``(d) Communication During Time Off Duty.--During a train employee's 
minimum off-duty period of 10 consecutive hours, as provided under 
subsection (a), or during an interim period of at least 4 consecutive 
hours available for rest under subsection (b)(7), a railroad carrier, 
and its managers, supervisors, officers, and agents, shall not 
communicate with the train employee by telephone, by pager, or in any 
other manner that could disrupt the employee's rest. Nothing in this 
subsection shall prohibit communication necessary to notify an employee 
of an emergency situation posing potential risks to the employee's 
safety or health.''.

SEC. 202. EMPLOYEE SLEEPING QUARTERS.

  Section 21106 of title 49, United States Code, is amended--
          (1) by inserting ``(a) In General.--'' before ``A railroad 
        carrier''; and
          (2) by adding at the end the following new subsection:
  ``(b) Camp Cars.--Effective 12 months after the date of enactment of 
this subsection, a railroad carrier and its officers and agents may not 
provide sleeping quarters through the use of camp cars, as defined in 
Appendix C to part 228 of title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations, 
for employees and any individuals employed to maintain the right of way 
of a railroad carrier.''.

SEC. 203. FATIGUE MANAGEMENT PLANS.

  (a) Amendment.--Chapter 211 of title 49, United States Code, is 
amended by adding at the end the following new section:

``Sec. 21109. Fatigue management plans

  ``(a) Plan Submission.--
          ``(1) Requirement.--Each railroad carrier shall submit to the 
        Secretary of Transportation, and update at least once every 2 
        years, a fatigue management plan that is designed to reduce the 
        fatigue experienced by railroad employees and to reduce the 
        likelihood of accidents and injuries caused by fatigue. The 
        plan shall address the safety effects of fatigue on all 
        employees performing safety sensitive functions, including 
        employees not covered by this chapter. The plan shall be 
        submitted not later than 1 year after the date of the enactment 
        of this section, or not later than 45 days prior to commencing 
        operations, whichever is later.
          ``(2) Contents of plan.--The fatigue management plan shall--
                  ``(A) identify and prioritize all situations that 
                pose a risk for safety that may be affected by fatigue;
                  ``(B) include the railroad carrier's--
                          ``(i) rationale for including and not 
                        including each element described in subsection 
                        (b)(2) in the plan;
                          ``(ii) analysis supporting each element 
                        included in the plan; and
                          ``(iii) explanations for how each element in 
                        the plan will reduce the risk associated with 
                        fatigue;
                  ``(C) describe how every condition on the railroad 
                carrier's property, and every type of employee, that is 
                likely to be affected by fatigue is addressed in the 
                plan; and
                  ``(D) include the name, title, address, and telephone 
                number of the primary person to be contacted with 
                regard to review of the plan.
          ``(3) Approval.--(A) The Secretary shall review each proposed 
        plan and approve or disapprove such plan based on whether the 
        requirements of this section are sufficiently and appropriately 
        addressed and the proposals are adequately justified in the 
        plan.
          ``(B) If the proposed plan is not approved, the Secretary 
        shall notify the affected railroad carrier as to the specific 
        points in which the proposed plan is deficient, and the 
        railroad carrier shall correct all deficiencies within 30 days 
        following receipt of written notice from the Secretary. If a 
        railroad carrier does not submit a plan (or, when directed by 
        the Secretary, an amended plan), or if a railroad carrier's 
        amended plan is not approved by the Secretary, the Secretary 
        shall prescribe a fatigue management plan for the railroad 
        carrier.
          ``(4) Employee participation.--(A) Each affected railroad 
        carrier shall consult with, and employ good faith and use its 
        best efforts to reach agreement by consensus with, all of its 
        directly affected employee groups on the contents of the 
        fatigue management plan, and, except as provided in 
        subparagraph (C), shall jointly with such groups submit the 
        plan to the Secretary.
          ``(B) In the event that labor organizations represent classes 
        or crafts of directly affected employees of the railroad 
        carrier, the railroad carrier shall consult with these 
        organizations in drafting the plan. The Secretary may provide 
        technical assistance and guidance to such parties in the 
        drafting of the plan.
          ``(C) If the railroad carrier and its directly affected 
        employees (including any labor organization representing a 
        class or craft of directly affected employees of the railroad 
        carrier) cannot reach consensus on the proposed contents of the 
        plan, then--
                  ``(i) the railroad carrier shall file the plan with 
                the Secretary; and
                  ``(ii) directly affected employees and labor 
                organizations representing a class or craft of directly 
                affected employees may, at their option, file a 
                statement with the Secretary explaining their views on 
                the plan on which consensus was not reached.
  ``(b) Elements of the Fatigue Management Plan.--
          ``(1) Consideration of varying circumstances.--Each plan 
        filed with the Secretary under the procedures of subsection (a) 
        shall take into account the varying circumstances of operations 
        by the railroad carrier on different parts of its system, and 
        shall prescribe appropriate fatigue countermeasures to address 
        those varying circumstances.
          ``(2) Issues affecting all employees performing safety 
        sensitive functions.--The railroad carrier shall consider the 
        need to include in its fatigue management plan elements 
        addressing each of the following issues:
                  ``(A) Education and training on the physiological and 
                human factors that affect fatigue, as well as 
                strategies to counter fatigue, based on current and 
                evolving scientific and medical research and 
                literature.
                  ``(B) Opportunities for identification, diagnosis, 
                and treatment of any medical condition that may affect 
                alertness or fatigue, including sleep disorders.
                  ``(C) Effects on employee fatigue of emergency 
                response involving both short-term emergency 
                situations, including derailments, and long-term 
                emergency situations, including natural disasters.
                  ``(D) Scheduling practices involving train lineups 
                and calling times, including work/rest cycles for shift 
                workers and on-call employees that permit employees to 
                compensate for cumulative sleep loss by guaranteeing a 
                minimum number of consecutive days off (exclusive of 
                time off due to illness or injury).
                  ``(E) Minimizing the incidence of fatigue that occurs 
                as a result of working at times when the natural 
                circadian rhythm increases fatigue.
                  ``(F) Alertness strategies, such as policies on 
                napping, to address acute sleepiness and fatigue while 
                an employee is on duty.
                  ``(G) Opportunities to obtain restful sleep at 
                lodging facilities, including sleeping quarters 
                provided by the railroad carrier.
                  ``(H) In connection with the scheduling of a duty 
                call, increasing the number of consecutive hours of 
                rest off duty, during which an employee receives no 
                communication from the employing railroad carrier or 
                its managers, supervisors, officers, or agents.
                  ``(I) Avoiding abrupt changes in rest cycles for 
                employees returning to duty after an extended absence 
                due to circumstances such as illness or injury.
                  ``(J) Additional elements as the Secretary considers 
                appropriate.
  ``(c) Compliance and Enforcement.--
          ``(1) Compliance requirement.--Effective upon approval or 
        prescription of a fatigue management plan, compliance with that 
        fatigue management plan becomes mandatory and enforceable by 
        the Secretary.
          ``(2) Effective date.--A fatigue management plan may include 
        effective dates later than the date of approval of the plan, 
        and may include different effective dates for different parts 
        of the plan.
          ``(3) Audits.--To enforce this section, the Secretary may 
        conduct inspections and periodic audits of a railroad carrier's 
        compliance with its fatigue management plan.
  ``(d) Definition.--For purposes of this section the term `directly 
affected employees' means employees, including employees of an 
independent contractor or subcontractor, to whose hours of service the 
terms of a fatigue management plan specifically apply.''.
  (b) Table of Sections Amendment.--The table of sections for chapter 
211 of title 49, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end 
the following new item:

``21109. Fatigue management plans.''.

SEC. 204. REGULATORY AUTHORITY.

  (a) Amendment.--Chapter 211 of title 49, United States Code, as 
amended by this Act, is further amended by adding at the end the 
following new section:

``Sec. 21110. Regulatory authority

  ``The Secretary of Transportation may by regulation--
          ``(1) reduce the maximum hours an employee may be required or 
        allowed to go or remain on duty to a level less than the level 
        established under this chapter, based on scientific and medical 
        research; or
          ``(2) increase the minimum hours an employee may be required 
        or allowed to rest to a level greater than the level 
        established under this chapter, based on scientific and medical 
        research.''.
  (b) Table of Sections Amendment.--The table of sections for chapter 
211 of title 49, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end 
the following new item:

``21110. Regulatory authority.''.

SEC. 205. CONFORMING AMENDMENT.

  Section 21303(c) of title 49, United States Code, is amended by 
striking ``officers and agents'' and inserting ``managers, supervisors, 
officers, and agents''.

            TITLE III--PROTECTION OF EMPLOYEES AND WITNESSES

SEC. 301. EMPLOYEE PROTECTIONS.

  Section 20109 of title 49, United States Code, is amended to read as 
follows:

``Sec. 20109. Employee protections

  ``(a) Protected Actions.--A railroad carrier engaged in interstate or 
foreign commerce, and an officer or employee of such a railroad 
carrier, shall not by threat, intimidation, or otherwise attempt to 
prevent an employee from, or discharge, discipline, or in any way 
discriminate against an employee for--
          ``(1) filing a complaint or bringing or causing to be brought 
        a proceeding related to the enforcement of this part or, as 
        applicable to railroad safety, chapter 51 or 57 of this title;
          ``(2) testifying in a proceeding described in paragraph (1);
          ``(3) notifying, or attempting to notify, the railroad 
        carrier or the Secretary of Transportation of a work-related 
        personal injury or work-related illness of an employee;
          ``(4) cooperating with a safety investigation by the 
        Secretary of Transportation or the National Transportation 
        Safety Board;
          ``(5) furnishing information to the Secretary of 
        Transportation, the National Transportation Safety Board, or 
        any other public official as to the facts relating to any 
        accident or incident resulting in injury or death to an 
        individual or damage to property occurring in connection with 
        railroad transportation; or
          ``(6) accurately reporting hours of duty pursuant to chapter 
        211.
  ``(b) Hazardous Conditions.--(1) A railroad carrier engaged in 
interstate or foreign commerce, and an officer or employee of such a 
railroad carrier, shall not by threat, intimidation, or otherwise 
attempt to prevent an employee from, or discharge, discipline, or in 
any way discriminate against an employee for--
          ``(A) reporting a hazardous condition;
          ``(B) refusing to work when confronted by a hazardous 
        condition related to the performance of the employee's duties, 
        if the conditions described in paragraph (2) exist; or
          ``(C) refusing to authorize the use of any safety-related 
        equipment, track, or structures, if the employee is responsible 
        for the inspection or repair of the equipment, track, or 
        structures, when the employee believes that the equipment, 
        track, or structures are in a hazardous condition, if the 
        conditions described in paragraph (2) exist.
  ``(2) A refusal is protected under paragraph (1)(B) and (C) if--
          ``(A) the refusal is made in good faith and no reasonable 
        alternative to the refusal is available to the employee;
          ``(B) the employee reasonably concludes that--
                  ``(i) the hazardous condition presents an imminent 
                danger of death or serious injury; and
                  ``(ii) the urgency of the situation does not allow 
                sufficient time to eliminate the danger without such 
                refusal; and
          ``(C) the employee, where possible, has notified the carrier 
        of the existence of the hazardous condition and the intention 
        not to perform further work, or not to authorize the use of the 
        hazardous equipment, track, or structures, unless the condition 
        is corrected immediately or the equipment, track, or structures 
        are repaired properly or replaced.
  ``(3) This subsection does not apply to security personnel employed 
by a railroad carrier to protect individuals and property transported 
by railroad.
  ``(c) Enforcement Action.--
          ``(1) In general.--An employee who alleges discharge or other 
        discrimination by any person in violation of subsection (a) may 
        seek relief in accordance with the provisions of this section, 
        with any petition or other request for relief under this 
        section to be initiated by filing a complaint with the 
        Secretary of Labor.
          ``(2) Procedure.--
                  ``(A) In general.--An action under this section shall 
                be governed under the rules and procedures set forth in 
                section 42121(b).
                  ``(B) Exception.--Notification made under section 
                42121(b)(1) shall be made to the person named in the 
                complaint and to the person's employer.
                  ``(C) Burdens of proof.--An action brought under this 
                section shall be governed by the legal burdens of proof 
                set forth in section 42121(b).
                  ``(D) Statute of limitations.--An action under this 
                section shall be commenced not later than 1 year after 
                the date on which the violation occurs.
          ``(3) De novo review.--If the Secretary of Labor has not 
        issued a final decision within 180 days after the filing of the 
        complaint (or, in the event that a final order or decision is 
        issued by the Secretary of Labor, whether within the 180-day 
        period or thereafter, then, not later than 90 days after such 
        an order or decision is issued), the employee may bring an 
        original action at law or equity for de novo review in the 
        appropriate district court of the United States, which shall 
        have jurisdiction over such an action without regard to the 
        amount in controversy, and which action shall, at the request 
        of either party to such action, be tried by the court with a 
        jury.
  ``(d) Remedies.--
          ``(1) In general.--An employee prevailing in any action under 
        this section shall be entitled to all relief necessary to make 
        the covered individual whole.
          ``(2) Damages.--Relief in an action under this section shall 
        include--
                  ``(A) reinstatement with the same seniority status 
                that the covered individual would have had, but for the 
                discrimination;
                  ``(B) the amount of any back pay, with interest; and
                  ``(C) compensation for any special damages sustained 
                as a result of the discrimination, including litigation 
                costs, expert witness fees, and reasonable attorney 
                fees.
          ``(3) Possible relief.--Relief may also include punitive 
        damages in an amount not to exceed 10 times the amount of any 
        compensatory damages awarded under this section.
  ``(e) Criminal Penalties.--
          ``(1) In general.--It shall be unlawful for any railroad 
        carrier to commit an act prohibited by subsection (a). Any 
        person who willfully violates this section by terminating or 
        retaliating against any such covered individual who makes a 
        claim under this section shall be fined under title 18, United 
        States Code, imprisoned not more than 1 year, or both.
          ``(2) Reporting requirement.--
                  ``(A) In general.--The Attorney General shall submit 
                to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure 
                of the House of Representatives and the Committee on 
                Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate an 
                annual report on the enforcement of paragraph (1).
                  ``(B) Contents.--Each such report shall--
                          ``(i) identify each case in which formal 
                        charges under paragraph (1) were brought;
                          ``(ii) describe the status or disposition of 
                        each such case; and
                          ``(iii) in any actions under subsection 
                        (c)(1) in which the employee was the prevailing 
                        party or the substantially prevailing party, 
                        indicate whether or not any formal charges 
                        under paragraph (1) of this subsection have 
                        been brought and, if not, the reasons therefor.
  ``(f) No Preemption.--Nothing in this section preempts or diminishes 
any other safeguards against discrimination, demotion, discharge, 
suspension, threats, harassment, reprimand, retaliation, or any other 
manner of discrimination provided by Federal or State law.
  ``(g) Rights Retained by Covered Individual.--Nothing in this section 
shall be deemed to diminish the rights, privileges, or remedies of any 
covered individual under any Federal or State law or under any 
collective bargaining agreement. The rights and remedies in this 
section may not be waived by any agreement, policy, form, or condition 
of employment.''.

                       TITLE IV--GRADE CROSSINGS

SEC. 401. TOLL-FREE NUMBER TO REPORT GRADE CROSSING PROBLEMS.

  Section 20152 of title 49, United States Code, is amended to read as 
follows:

``Sec. 20152. Emergency notification of grade crossing problems

  ``Not later than 18 months after the date of enactment of the Federal 
Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007, the Secretary of 
Transportation shall require each railroad carrier to--
          ``(1) establish and maintain a toll-free telephone service, 
        for rights-of-way over which it dispatches trains, to directly 
        receive calls reporting--
                  ``(A) malfunctions of signals, crossing gates, and 
                other devices to promote safety at the grade crossing 
                of railroad tracks on those rights-of-way and public or 
                private roads; and
                  ``(B) disabled vehicles blocking railroad tracks at 
                such grade crossings;
          ``(2) upon receiving a report of a malfunction or disabled 
        vehicle pursuant to paragraph (1), immediately contact trains 
        operating near the grade crossing to warn them of the 
        malfunction or disabled vehicle;
          ``(3) upon receiving a report of a malfunction or disabled 
        vehicle pursuant to paragraph (1), and after contacting trains 
        pursuant to paragraph (2), contact, as necessary, appropriate 
        public safety officials having jurisdiction over the grade 
        crossing to provide them with the information necessary for 
        them to direct traffic, assist in the removal of the disabled 
        vehicle, or carry out other activities appropriate to 
        responding to the hazardous circumstance; and
          ``(4) ensure the placement at each grade crossing on rights-
        of-way that it owns of appropriately located signs, on which 
        shall appear, at a minimum--
                  ``(A) a toll-free telephone number to be used for 
                placing calls described in paragraph (1) to the 
                railroad carrier dispatching trains on that right-of-
                way;
                  ``(B) an explanation of the purpose of that toll-free 
                number as described in paragraph (1); and
                  ``(C) the grade crossing number assigned for that 
                crossing by the National Highway-Rail Crossing 
                Inventory established by the Department of 
                Transportation.
The Secretary of Transportation shall implement this section through 
appropriate regulations.''.

SEC. 402. ROADWAY USER SIGHT DISTANCE AT HIGHWAY-RAIL GRADE CROSSINGS.

  (a) In General.--Subchapter II of chapter 201 of title 49, United 
States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following new section:

``Sec. 20156. Roadway user sight distance at highway-rail grade 
                    crossings

  ``(a) In General.--Not later than 18 months after the date of 
enactment of the Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007, the 
Secretary of Transportation shall prescribe regulations that require 
each railroad carrier to remove from its rights-of-way at all public 
highway-rail grade crossings, and at all private highway-rail grade 
crossings open to unrestricted public access (as declared in writing by 
the holder of the crossing right), grass, brush, shrubbery, trees, and 
other vegetation which may obstruct the view of a pedestrian or a 
vehicle operator for a reasonable distance in either direction of the 
train's approach, and to maintain its rights-of-way at all such 
crossings free of such vegetation. In prescribing the regulations, the 
Secretary shall take into consideration to the extent practicable--
          ``(1) the type of warning device or warning devices installed 
        at the crossing;
          ``(2) factors affecting the timeliness and effectiveness of 
        roadway user decisionmaking, including the maximum allowable 
        roadway speed, maximum authorized train speed, angle of 
        intersection, and topography;
          ``(3) the presence or absence of other sight distance 
        obstructions off the railroad right-of-way; and
          ``(4) any other factors affecting safety at such crossings.
  ``(b) Protected Vegetation.--In promulgating regulations pursuant to 
this section, the Secretary may make allowance for preservation of 
trees and other ornamental or protective growth where State or local 
law or policy would otherwise protect the vegetation from removal and 
where the roadway authority or private crossing holder is notified of 
the sight distance obstruction and, within a reasonable period 
specified by the regulation, takes appropriate temporary and permanent 
action to abate the hazard to roadway users (such as by closing the 
crossing, posting supplementary signage, installing active warning 
devices, lowering roadway speed, or installing traffic calming 
devices).
  ``(c) No Preemption.--Notwithstanding section 20106, subsections (a) 
and (b) of this section do not prohibit a State from continuing in 
force, or from enacting, a law, regulation, or order requiring the 
removal of obstructive vegetation from a railroad right-of-way for 
safety reasons that is more stringent than the requirements of the 
regulations prescribed pursuant to this section.
  ``(d) Model Legislation.--Not later than 18 months after the date of 
enactment of the Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007, the 
Secretary, after consultation with the Federal Railroad Safety 
Administration, the Federal Highway Administration, and States, shall 
develop and make available to States model legislation providing for 
improving safety by addressing sight obstructions at highway-rail grade 
crossings that are equipped solely with passive warnings, such as 
permanent structures, temporary structures, and standing railroad 
equipment, as recommended by the Inspector General of the Department of 
Transportation in Report No. MH-2007-044.''.
  (b) Conforming Amendment.--The table of sections for such subchapter 
II of chapter 201 is amended by inserting after the item relating to 
section 20155 the following new item:

``20156. Roadway user sight distance at highway-rail grade 
crossings.''.

SEC. 403. GRADE CROSSING SIGNAL VIOLATIONS.

  (a) Amendments.--Section 20151 of title 49, United States Code, is 
amended--
          (1) by amending the section heading to read as follows:

``Sec. 20151. Railroad trespassing, vandalism, and signal violation 
                    prevention strategy'';

          (2) in subsection (a)--
                  (A) by striking ``and vandalism affecting railroad 
                safety'' and inserting in lieu thereof ``, vandalism 
                affecting railroad safety, and violations of grade 
                crossing signals'';
                  (B) by inserting ``, concerning trespassing and 
                vandalism,'' after ``such evaluation and review''; and
                  (C) by inserting ``The second such evaluation and 
                review, concerning violations of grade crossing 
                signals, shall be completed before April 1, 2008.'' 
                after ``November 2, 1994.'';
          (3) in the subsection heading of subsection (b), by inserting 
        ``for Trespassing and Vandalism Prevention'' after ``Outreach 
        Program'';
          (4) in subsection (c)--
                  (A) by redesignating paragraphs (1) and (2) as 
                subparagraphs (A) and (B), respectively;
                  (B) by inserting ``(1)'' after ``Model Legislation.--
                ''; and
                  (C) by adding at the end the following new paragraph:
  ``(2) Within 18 months after the date of enactment of the Federal 
Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007, the Secretary, after 
consultation with State and local governments, railroad carriers, and 
rail labor organizations, shall develop and make available to State and 
local governments model State legislation providing for civil or 
criminal penalties, or both, for violations of grade crossing 
signals.''; and
          (5) by adding at the end the following new subsection:
  ``(d) Definition.--For purposes of this section, the term `violation 
of grade crossing signals' includes any action by a motorist, unless 
directed by an authorized safety officer--
          ``(1) to drive around a grade crossing gate in a position 
        intended to block passage over railroad tracks;
          ``(2) to drive through a flashing grade crossing signal;
          ``(3) to drive through a grade crossing with passive warning 
        signs without ensuring that the grade crossing could be safely 
        crossed before any train arrived; and
          ``(4) in the vicinity of a grade crossing, that creates a 
        hazard of an accident involving injury or property damage at 
        the grade crossing.''.
  (b) Conforming Amendment.--The item relating to section 20151 in the 
table of sections for subchapter II of chapter 201 of title 49, United 
States Code, is amended to read as follows:

``20151. Railroad trespassing, vandalism, and signal violation 
prevention strategy.''.

SEC. 404. NATIONAL CROSSING INVENTORY.

  (a) In General.--Subchapter II of chapter 201 of title 49, United 
States Code, as amended by this Act, is further amended by adding at 
the end the following new section:

``Sec. 20157. National crossing inventory

  ``(a) Initial Reporting of Information About Previously Unreported 
Crossings.--Not later than 1 year after the date of enactment of the 
Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007 or 6 months after a new 
crossing becomes operational, whichever occurs later, each railroad 
carrier shall--
          ``(1) report to the Secretary of Transportation current 
        information, including information about warning devices and 
        signage, as specified by the Secretary, concerning each 
        previously unreported crossing through which it operates; or
          ``(2) ensure that the information has been reported to the 
        Secretary by another railroad carrier that operates through the 
        crossing.
  ``(b) Updating of Crossing Information.--(1) On a periodic basis 
beginning not later than 3 years after the date of enactment of the 
Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007 and on or before 
September 30 of every third year thereafter, or as otherwise specified 
by the Secretary, each railroad carrier shall--
          ``(A) report to the Secretary current information, including 
        information about warning devices and signage, as specified by 
        the Secretary, concerning each crossing through which it 
        operates; or
          ``(B) ensure that the information has been reported to the 
        Secretary by another railroad carrier that operates through the 
        crossing.
  ``(2) A railroad carrier that sells a crossing or any part of a 
crossing on or after the date of enactment of the Federal Railroad 
Safety Improvement Act of 2007 shall, not later than the date that is 
18 months after the date of enactment of that Act or 3 months after the 
sale, whichever occurs later, or as otherwise specified by the 
Secretary, report to the Secretary current information, as specified by 
the Secretary, concerning the change in ownership of the crossing or 
part of the crossing.
  ``(c) Rulemaking Authority.--The Secretary shall prescribe the 
regulations necessary to implement this section. The Secretary may 
enforce each provision of the Department of Transportation's statement 
of the national highway-rail crossing inventory policy, procedures, and 
instruction for States and railroads that is in effect on the date of 
enactment of the Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007, until 
such provision is superseded by a regulation issued under this section.
  ``(d) Definitions.--In this section:
          ``(1) Crossing.--The term `crossing' means a location within 
        a State, other than a location where one or more railroad 
        tracks cross one or more railroad tracks either at grade or 
        grade-separated, where--
                  ``(A) a public highway, road, or street, or a private 
                roadway, including associated sidewalks and pathways, 
                crosses one or more railroad tracks either at grade or 
                grade-separated; or
                  ``(B) a pathway dedicated for the use of nonvehicular 
                traffic, including pedestrians, bicyclists, and others, 
                that is not associated with a public highway, road, or 
                street, or a private roadway, crosses one or more 
                railroad tracks either at grade or grade-separated.
          ``(2) State.--The term `State' means a State of the United 
        States, the District of Columbia, or the Commonwealth of Puerto 
        Rico.''.
  (b) Conforming Amendment.--The table of sections for such subchapter 
II of chapter 201 is amended by adding at the end the following new 
item:

``20157. National crossing inventory.''.

  (c) Reporting and Updating.--Section 130 of title 23, United States 
Code, is amended by adding at the end the following:
  ``(l) National Crossing Inventory.--
          ``(1) Initial reporting of crossing information.--Not later 
        than 1 year after the date of enactment of the Federal Railroad 
        Safety Improvement Act of 2007 or within 6 months of a new 
        crossing becoming operational, whichever occurs later, each 
        State shall report to the Secretary of Transportation current 
        information, including information about warning devices and 
        signage, as specified by the Secretary, concerning each 
        previously unreported crossing located within its borders.
          ``(2) Periodic updating of crossing information.--On a 
        periodic basis beginning not later than 3 years after the date 
        of enactment of the Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 
        2007 and on or before September 30 of every third year 
        thereafter, or as otherwise specified by the Secretary, each 
        State shall report to the Secretary current information, 
        including information about warning devices and signage, as 
        specified by the Secretary, concerning each crossing located 
        within its borders.
          ``(3) Rulemaking authority.--The Secretary shall prescribe 
        the regulations necessary to implement this subsection. The 
        Secretary may enforce each provision of the Department of 
        Transportation's statement of the national highway-rail 
        crossing inventory policy, procedures, and instructions for 
        States and railroads that is in effect on the date of enactment 
        of the Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007, until 
        such provision is superseded by a regulation issued under this 
        subsection.
          ``(4) Definitions.--In this subsection, the terms `crossing' 
        and `State' have the meaning given those terms by section 
        20157(d)(1) and (2), respectively, of title 49.''.
  (d) Civil Penalties.--(1) Section 21301(a)(1) of title 49, United 
States Code, is amended--
          (A) by inserting ``with section 20157 or'' after ``comply'' 
        in the first sentence; and
          (B) by inserting ``section 20157 of this title or'' after 
        ``violating'' in the second sentence.
  (2) Section 21301(a)(2) of title 49, United States Code, is amended 
by inserting ``The Secretary shall impose a civil penalty for a 
violation of section 20157 of this title.'' after the first sentence.

SEC. 405. ACCIDENT AND INCIDENT REPORTING.

  The Federal Railroad Safety Administration shall conduct an audit of 
each Class I railroad at least once every 2 years and conduct an audit 
of each non-Class I railroad at least once every 5 years to ensure that 
all grade crossing collisions and fatalities are reported to the 
national accident database.

SEC. 406. AUTHORITY TO BUY PROMOTIONAL ITEMS TO IMPROVE RAILROAD 
                    CROSSING SAFETY AND PREVENT RAILROAD TRESPASS.

  Section 20134(a) of title 49, United States Code, is amended by 
adding at the end the following: ``The Secretary may purchase 
promotional items of nominal value and distribute them to the public 
without charge as part of an educational or awareness program to 
accomplish the purposes of this section and of any other sections of 
this title related to improving the safety of highway-rail crossings 
and to prevent trespass on railroad rights of way, and the Secretary 
shall prescribe guidelines for the administration of this authority.''.

SEC. 407. OPERATION LIFESAVER.

  (a) Grant.--The Federal Railroad Safety Administration shall make a 
grant or grants to Operation Lifesaver to carry out a public 
information and education program to help prevent and reduce 
pedestrian, bicycle, motor vehicle, and other incidents, injuries, and 
fatalities, and to improve awareness along railroad rights-of-way and 
at highway-rail grade crossings. This includes development, placement, 
and dissemination of Public Service Announcements in newspaper, radio, 
television, and other media. It will also include school presentations, 
brochures and materials, support for public awareness campaigns, and 
related support for the activities of Operation Lifesaver's member 
organizations.
  (b) Pilot Program.--Funds provided under subsection (a) may also be 
used by Operation Lifesaver to implement a pilot program, to be known 
as the Railroad Safety Public Awareness Program, that addresses the 
need for targeted, sustained community outreach on the subjects 
described in subsection (a). Such pilot program shall be established in 
States and communities where risk is greatest, in terms of the number 
of crashes and population density near the railroad, including 
residences, businesses, and schools. Such pilot program shall be 
carried out through grants to Operation Lifesaver for work with 
community leaders, school districts, and public and private partners to 
identify the communities at greatest risk, and through development of 
an implementation plan. An evaluation component requirement shall be 
included in the grant to measure results.
  (c) Authorization of Appropriations.--There are authorized to be 
appropriated to the Federal Railroad Safety Administration for carrying 
out this section $1,500,000 for each of the fiscal years 2008 through 
2011.

SEC. 408. STATE ACTION PLAN.

  (a) In General.--The Secretary shall identify on an annual basis the 
top 10 States that have had the most highway-rail grade crossing 
collisions over the past year. The Secretary shall work with each of 
these States to develop a State Grade Crossing Action Plan that 
identifies specific solutions for improving safety at crossings, 
particularly at crossings that have experienced multiple accidents.
  (b) Review and Approval.--Not later than 60 days after the Secretary 
receives a plan under subsection (a), the Secretary shall review and 
approve or disapprove it. If the proposed plan is not approved, the 
Secretary shall notify the affected State as to the specific points in 
which the proposed plan is deficient, and the State shall correct all 
deficiencies within 30 days following receipt of written notice from 
the Secretary.

SEC. 409. FOSTERING INTRODUCTION OF NEW TECHNOLOGY TO IMPROVE SAFETY AT 
                    HIGHWAY-RAIL GRADE CROSSINGS.

  (a) Amendment.--Chapter 201 of title 49, United States Code, as 
amended by this Act, is further amended by adding at the end the 
following:

``Sec. 20165. Fostering introduction of new technology to improve 
                    safety at highway-rail grade crossings

  ``(a) Findings.--(1) Collisions between highway users and trains at 
highway-rail grade crossings continue to cause an unacceptable loss of 
life and serious personal injury and also threaten the safety of rail 
transportation.
  ``(2) While elimination of at-grade crossings through consolidation 
of crossings and grade separations offers the greatest long-term 
promise for optimizing the safety and efficiency of the two modes of 
transportation, over 140,000 public grade crossings remain on the 
general rail system--approximately one for each route mile on the 
general rail system.
  ``(3) Conventional highway traffic control devices such as flashing 
lights and gates are effective in warning motorists of a train's 
approach to an equipped crossing.
  ``(4) Since enactment of the Highway Safety Act of 1973, over 
$4,200,000,000 of Federal funding has been invested in safety 
improvements at highway-rail grade crossings, yet a majority of public 
highway-rail grade crossings are not yet equipped with active warning 
systems.
  ``(5) The emergence of new technologies supporting Intelligent 
Transportation Systems presents opportunities for more effective and 
affordable warnings and safer passage of highway users and trains at 
remaining highway-rail grade crossings.
  ``(6) Implementation of new crossing safety technology will require 
extensive cooperation between highway authorities and railroad 
carriers.
  ``(7) Federal Railroad Safety Administration regulations establishing 
performance standards for processor-based signal and train control 
systems provide a suitable framework for qualification of new or novel 
technology at highway-rail grade crossings, and the Federal Highway 
Administration's Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices provides an 
appropriate means of determining highway user interface with such new 
technology.
  ``(b) Policy.--It is the policy of the United States to encourage the 
development of new technology that can prevent loss of life and 
injuries at highway-rail grade crossings. The Secretary of 
Transportation is designated to carry out this policy in consultation 
with States and necessary public and private entities.''.
  (b) Table of Sections Amendment.--The table of sections for chapter 
201 of title 49, United States Code, as amended by this Act, is further 
amended by adding at the end the following new item:

``20165. Fostering introduction of new technology to improve safety at 
highway-rail grade crossings.''.

                          TITLE V--ENFORCEMENT

SEC. 501. ENFORCEMENT.

   Section 20112(a) of title 49, United States Code, is amended--
          (1) by inserting ``this part or'' in paragraph (1) after 
        ``enforce,'';
          (2) by striking ``21301'' in paragraph (2) and inserting 
        ``21301, 21302, or 21303'';
          (3) by striking ``subpena'' in paragraph (3) and inserting 
        ``subpoena, request for admissions, request for production of 
        documents or other tangible things, or request for testimony by 
        deposition''; and
          (4) by striking ``chapter.'' in paragraph (3) and inserting 
        ``part.''.

SEC. 502. CIVIL PENALTIES.

  (a) General Violations of Chapter 201.--Section 21301(a)(2) of title 
49, United States Code, is amended--
          (1) by striking ``$10,000'' and inserting ``$25,000''; and
          (2) by striking ``$20,000'' and inserting ``$100,000''.
  (b) Accident and Incident Violations of Chapter 201; Violations of 
Chapters 203 Through 209.--Section 21302(a)(2) of title 49, United 
States Code, is amended--
          (1) by striking ``$10,000'' and inserting ``$25,000''; and
          (2) by striking ``$20,000'' and inserting ``$100,000''.
  (c) Violations of Chapter 211.--Section 21303(a)(2) of title 49, 
United States Code, is amended--
          (1) by striking ``$10,000'' and inserting ``$25,000''; and
          (2) by striking ``$20,000'' and inserting ``$100,000''.

SEC. 503. CRIMINAL PENALTIES.

  Section 21311(b) of title 49, United States Code, is amended by 
striking ``$500'' both places it appears and inserting ``$2,500''.

SEC. 504. EXPANSION OF EMERGENCY ORDER AUTHORITY.

  Section 20104(a)(1) of title 49, United States Code, is amended by 
striking ``death or personal injury'' and inserting ``death, personal 
injury, or significant harm to the environment''.

SEC. 505. ENFORCEMENT TRANSPARENCY.

  (a) Amendment.--Subchapter I of chapter 201 of title 49, United 
States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following:

``Sec. 20118. Enforcement transparency

  ``(a) In General.--Not later than December 31, 2007, the Secretary of 
Transportation shall--
          ``(1) provide a monthly updated summary to the public of all 
        railroad enforcement actions taken by the Secretary or the 
        Federal Railroad Safety Administration, from the time a notice 
        commencing an enforcement action is issued until the 
        enforcement action is final;
          ``(2) include in each such summary identification of the 
        railroad carrier or person involved in the enforcement 
        activity, the type of alleged violation, the penalty or 
        penalties proposed, any changes in case status since the 
        previous summary, the final assessment amount of each penalty, 
        and the reasons for a reduction in the proposed penalty, if 
        appropriate; and
          ``(3) provide a mechanism by which a railroad carrier or 
        person named in an enforcement action may make information, 
        explanations, or documents it believes are responsive to the 
        enforcement action available to the public.
  ``(b) Electronic Availability.--Each summary under this section shall 
be made available to the public by electronic means.
  ``(c) Relationship to FOIA.--Nothing in this section shall be 
construed to require disclosure of information or records that are 
exempt from disclosure under section 552 of title 5.''.
  (b) Table of Sections Amendment.--The table of sections of subchapter 
I of chapter 201 of title 49, United States Code, is amended by adding 
at the end the following new item:

``20118. Enforcement transparency.''.

SEC. 506. INTERFERING WITH OR HAMPERING SAFETY INVESTIGATIONS.

  (a) Amendment.--Subchapter II of chapter 213 of title 49, United 
States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following new section:

``Sec. 21312. Interfering with or hampering safety investigations

  ``(a) In General.--It shall be unlawful for any person knowingly to 
interfere with, obstruct, or hamper an investigation by the Secretary 
of Transportation conducted under section 20703 or 20902 of this title, 
or a railroad investigation by the National Transportation Safety Board 
under chapter 11 of this title.
  ``(b) Intimidation and Harassment.--It shall be unlawful for any 
person, with regard to an investigation conducted by the Secretary 
under section 20703 or 20902 of this title, or a railroad investigation 
by the National Transportation Safety Board under chapter 11 of this 
title, knowingly or intentionally to use intimidation, harassment, 
threats, or physical force toward another person, or corruptly persuade 
another person, or attempt to do so, or engage in misleading conduct 
toward another person, with the intent or effect of--
          ``(1) influencing the testimony or statement of any person;
          ``(2) hindering, delaying, preventing, or dissuading any 
        person from--
                  ``(A) attending a proceeding or interview with, 
                testifying before, or providing a written statement to, 
                a National Transportation Safety Board railroad 
                investigator, a Federal railroad safety inspector or 
                State railroad safety inspector, or their superiors;
                  ``(B) communicating or reporting to a National 
                Transportation Safety Board railroad investigator, a 
                Federal railroad safety inspector, or a State railroad 
                safety inspector, or their superiors, information 
                relating to the commission or possible commission of 
                one or more violations of this part or of chapter 51 of 
                this title; or
                  ``(C) recommending or using any legal remedy 
                available to the Secretary under this title; or
          ``(3) causing or inducing any person to--
                  ``(A) withhold testimony, or a statement, record, 
                document, or other object, from the investigation;
                  ``(B) alter, destroy, mutilate, or conceal a 
                statement, record, document, or other object with 
                intent to impair the integrity or availability of the 
                statement, record, document, or other object for use in 
                the investigation;
                  ``(C) evade legal process summoning that person to 
                appear as a witness, or to produce a statement, record, 
                document, or other object, in the investigation; or
                  ``(D) be absent from an investigation to which such 
                person has been summoned by legal process.
  ``(c) Elements of Violation.--(1) For the purposes of this section, 
the testimony or statement, or the record, document, or other object, 
need not be admissible in evidence or free from a claim of privilege.
  ``(2) In a prosecution for an offense under this section, no state of 
mind need be proved with respect to the circumstance that the 
investigation is being conducted by the Secretary under section 20703 
or 20902 of this title or by the National Transportation Safety Board 
under chapter 11 of this title.
  ``(d) Criminal Penalties.--A person violating this section shall be 
fined under title 18, imprisoned for not more than 1 year, or both.''.
  (b) Table of Sections Amendment.--The table of sections of subchapter 
II of chapter 213 of title 49, United States Code, is amended by adding 
at the end the following new item:

``21312. Interfering with or hampering safety investigations.''.

SEC. 507. RAILROAD RADIO MONITORING AUTHORITY.

  Section 20107 of title 49, United States Code, is amended by 
inserting at the end the following:
  ``(c) Railroad Radio Communications.--
          ``(1) In general.--To carry out the Secretary's 
        responsibilities under this part and under chapter 51, the 
        Secretary may authorize officers, employees, or agents of the 
        Secretary to conduct the following activities in circumstances 
        the Secretary finds to be reasonable:
                  ``(A) Intercepting a radio communication, with or 
                without the consent of the sender or other receivers of 
                the communication, but only where such communication is 
                broadcast or transmitted over a radio frequency which 
                is--
                          ``(i) authorized for use by one or more 
                        railroad carriers by the Federal Communications 
                        Commission; and
                          ``(ii) primarily used by such railroad 
                        carriers for communications in connection with 
                        railroad operations.
                  ``(B) Communicating the existence, contents, 
                substance, purport, effect, or meaning of the 
                communication, subject to the restrictions in paragraph 
                (3).
                  ``(C) Receiving or assisting in receiving the 
                communication (or any information therein contained).
                  ``(D) Disclosing the contents, substance, purport, 
                effect, or meaning of the communication (or any part 
                thereof of such communication) or using the 
                communication (or any information contained therein), 
                subject to the restrictions in paragraph (3), after 
                having received the communication or acquired knowledge 
                of the contents, substance, purport, effect, or meaning 
                of the communication (or any part thereof).
                  ``(E) Recording the communication by any means, 
                including writing and tape recording.
          ``(2) Accident prevention and accident investigation.--The 
        Secretary, and officers, employees, and agents of the 
        Department of Transportation authorized by the Secretary, may 
        engage in the activities authorized by paragraph (1) for the 
        purpose of accident prevention and accident investigation.
          ``(3) Use of information.--(A) Information obtained through 
        activities authorized by paragraphs (1) and (2) shall not be 
        admitted into evidence in any administrative or judicial 
        proceeding except--
                  ``(i) in a prosecution of a felony under Federal or 
                State criminal law; or
                  ``(ii) to impeach evidence offered by a party other 
                than the Federal Government regarding the existence, 
                electronic characteristics, content, substance, 
                purport, effect, meaning, or timing of, or identity of 
                parties to, a communication intercepted pursuant to 
                paragraphs (1) and (2) in proceedings pursuant to 
                section 5122, 5123, 20702(b), 20111, 20112, 20113, or 
                20114 of this title.
          ``(B) If information obtained through activities set forth in 
        paragraphs (1) and (2) is admitted into evidence for 
        impeachment purposes in accordance with subparagraph (A), the 
        court, administrative law judge, or other officer before whom 
        the proceeding is conducted may make such protective orders 
        regarding the confidentiality or use of the information as may 
        be appropriate in the circumstances to protect privacy and 
        administer justice.
          ``(C) No evidence shall be excluded in an administrative or 
        judicial proceeding solely because the government would not 
        have learned of the existence of or obtained such evidence but 
        for the interception of information that is not admissible in 
        such proceeding under subparagraph (A).
          ``(D) Information obtained through activities set forth in 
        paragraphs (1) and (2) shall not be subject to publication or 
        disclosure, or search or review in connection therewith, under 
        section 552 of title 5.
          ``(E) Nothing in this subsection shall be construed to impair 
        or otherwise affect the authority of the United States to 
        intercept a communication, and collect, retain, analyze, use, 
        and disseminate the information obtained thereby, under a 
        provision of law other than this subsection.
          ``(4) Application with other law.--Section 705 of the 
        Communications Act of 1934 (47 U.S.C. 605) and chapter 119 of 
        title 18 shall not apply to conduct authorized by and pursuant 
        to this subsection.''.

SEC. 508. INSPECTOR STAFFING.

  The Secretary shall increase the total number of positions for 
railroad safety inspection and enforcement personnel at the Federal 
Railroad Safety Administration so that by December 31, 2008, the total 
number of such positions is at least 500, by December 31, 2009, the 
total number of such positions is at least 600, by December 31, 2010, 
the total number of such positions is at least 700, and by December 31, 
2011, the total number of positions is at least 800.

                   TITLE VI--MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

SEC. 601. POSITIVE TRAIN CONTROL SYSTEMS.

  (a) In General.--Not later than 12 months after the date of enactment 
of this Act, each Class I railroad carrier shall develop and submit to 
the Secretary a plan for implementing a positive train control system 
by December 31, 2014, that will minimize the risk of train collisions 
and over-speed derailments, provide protection to maintenance-of-way 
workers within established work zone limits, and minimize the risk of 
the movement of a train through a switch left in the wrong position.
  (b) Safety Redundancy.--The positive train control system required 
under subsection (a) shall provide a safety redundancy to minimize the 
risk of accidents by overriding human performance failures involving 
train movements on main line tracks.
  (c) Contents of Plan.--The Secretary may provide technical assistance 
and guidance to railroad carriers in developing the plans required 
under subsection (a), and shall require that each railroad carrier 
include in the plan, at a minimum--
          (1) measurable goals, including a strategy and timeline for 
        implementation of such systems;
          (2) a prioritization of how the systems will be implemented, 
        with particular emphasis on high-risk corridors such as those 
        that have significant movements of hazardous materials or where 
        commuter and intercity passenger railroads operate;
          (3) identification of detailed steps the carriers will take 
        to implement the systems; and
          (4) any other element the Secretary considers appropriate.
  (d) Review and Approval.--Not later than 90 days after the Secretary 
receives a plan, the Secretary shall review and approve it. If the 
proposed plan is not approved, the Secretary shall notify the affected 
railroad carrier as to the specific points in which the proposed plan 
is deficient, and the railroad carrier shall correct all deficiencies 
within 30 days following receipt of written notice from the Secretary. 
The Secretary shall annually conduct a review to ensure that the 
railroads are complying with their plans.
  (e) Report.--Not later than December 31, 2011, the Secretary shall 
transmit a report to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure 
of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, 
and Transportation of the Senate on the progress of the railroad 
carriers in implementing such positive train control systems.
  (f) Authority To Extend Deadline.--The Secretary may extend the date 
for implementation required under subsection (a) for any Class I 
railroad carrier for a period of not more than 24 months if the 
Secretary determines such an extension is necessary--
          (1) to implement a more effective positive train control 
        system than would be possible under the date established in 
        subsection (a);
          (2) to obtain interoperability between positive train control 
        systems implemented by railroad carriers;
          (3) for the Secretary to determine that a positive train 
        control system meets the requirements of this section and 
        regulations issued by the Secretary; or
          (4) to otherwise enhance safety.
  (g) Certification.--The Secretary shall not permit the installation 
of any positive train control system or component unless the Secretary 
has certified that such system or component has not experienced a 
safety-critical failure during prior testing and evaluation. If such a 
failure has occurred, the system or component may be repaired and 
evaluated in accordance with part 236 of title 49 of the Code of 
Federal Regulations and may be installed when the Secretary certifies 
that the factors causing the failure have been corrected and approves 
the system for installation in accordance with such part 236.
  (h) Notice.--Not later than 30 days after the Secretary grants an 
extension under subsection (f), the Secretary shall publish a notice in 
the Federal Register that identifies the Class I railroad carrier that 
is being granted the extension, the reasons for granting the extension, 
and the length of the extension.

SEC. 602. WARNING IN NONSIGNALED TERRITORY.

  (a) Amendment.--Subchapter II of chapter 201 of title 49, United 
States Code, as amended by this Act, is further amended by adding at 
the end the following new section:

``Sec. 20158. Warning in nonsignaled territory

  ``Not later than 12 months after the date of enactment of the Federal 
Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007, the Secretary of 
Transportation shall prescribe regulations that require railroads, with 
respect to main lines in nonsignaled territory without a train speed 
enforcement system that would stop a train in advance of a misaligned 
switch, to either--
          ``(1) install an automatically activated device, in addition 
        to the switch banner, that will, visually or electronically, 
        compellingly capture the attention of the employees involved 
        with switch operations and clearly convey the status of the 
        switch both in daylight and darkness; or
          ``(2) operate trains at speeds that will allow them to be 
        safely stopped in advance of misaligned switches.''.
  (b) Table of Sections Amendment.--The table of sections of subchapter 
II of chapter 201 of title 49, United States Code, is amended by adding 
at the end the following new item:

``20158. Warning in nonsignaled territory.''.

SEC. 603. TRACK SAFETY.

  (a) Amendment.--Subchapter II of chapter 201 of title 49, United 
States Code, as amended by this Act, is further amended by adding at 
the end the following new section:

``Sec. 20159. Track safety

  ``(a) Rail Integrity.--Not later than 12 months after the date of 
enactment of the Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007, the 
Secretary of Transportation shall prescribe regulations to require 
railroad carriers to manage the rail in their tracks so as to minimize 
accidents due to internal rail flaws. The regulations shall, at a 
minimum--
          ``(1) require railroad carriers to conduct ultrasonic or 
        other appropriate inspections to ensure that rail used to 
        replace defective segments of existing rail is free from 
        internal defects;
          ``(2) require railroad carriers to perform rail integrity 
        inspections to manage an annual service failure rate of less 
        than .1 per track mile on high-risk corridors such as those 
        that have significant movements of hazardous materials or where 
        commuter and intercity passenger railroads operate; and
          ``(3) encourage railroad carrier use of advanced rail defect 
        inspection equipment and similar technologies as part of a 
        comprehensive rail inspection program.
  ``(b) Concrete Crossties.--Not later than 18 months after the date of 
enactment of the Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007, the 
Secretary shall develop and implement regulations for all classes of 
track for concrete crossties that address, at a minimum--
          ``(1) limits for rail seat abrasion;
          ``(2) concrete crosstie pad wear limits;
          ``(3) missing or broken rail fasteners;
          ``(4) loss of appropriate toeload pressure;
          ``(5) improper fastener configurations; and
          ``(6) excessive lateral rail movement.''.
  (b) Table of Sections Amendment.--The table of sections of subchapter 
II of chapter 201 of title 49, United States Code, is amended by adding 
at the end the following new item:

``20159. Track safety.''.

SEC. 604. CERTIFICATION OF CONDUCTORS.

  (a) Amendment.--Subchapter II of chapter 201 of title 49, United 
States Code, as amended by this Act, is further amended by adding at 
the end the following new section:

``Sec. 20160. Certification of conductors

  ``(a) Regulations.--Not later than 18 months after the date of 
enactment of the Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007, the 
Secretary of Transportation shall prescribe regulations and issue 
orders to establish a program requiring the certification of train 
conductors. In prescribing such regulations, the Secretary shall 
require that conductors on passenger trains be trained in security, 
first aid, and emergency preparedness.
  ``(b) Program Design.--The program established under this section 
shall be designed based on the requirements of section 20135(b) through 
(e).''.
  (b) Table of Sections Amendment.--The table of sections of subchapter 
II of chapter 201 of title 49, United States Code, is amended by adding 
at the end the following new item:

``20160. Certification of conductors.''.

SEC. 605. MINIMUM TRAINING STANDARDS.

  (a) Amendment.--Subchapter II of chapter 201 of title 49, United 
States Code, as amended by this Act, is further amended by adding at 
the end the following new section:

``Sec. 20161. Minimum training standards

  ``The Secretary of Transportation shall, not later than 180 days 
after the date of enactment of the Federal Railroad Safety Improvement 
Act of 2007, establish--
          ``(1) minimum training standards for each class and craft of 
        railroad employees, which shall require railroad carriers to 
        qualify or otherwise document the proficiency of their 
        employees in each class and craft regarding their knowledge of, 
        and ability to comply with, Federal railroad safety laws and 
        regulations and railroad carrier rules and procedures 
        promulgated to implement those Federal railroad safety laws and 
        regulations;
          ``(2) a requirement for railroad carriers to submit their 
        training and qualification programs to the Federal Railroad 
        Safety Administration for approval; and
          ``(3) a minimum training curriculum, and ongoing training 
        criteria, testing, and skills evaluation measures to ensure 
        that railroad employees charged with the inspection of track or 
        railroad equipment are qualified to assess railroad compliance 
        with Federal standards to identify defective conditions and 
        initiate immediate remedial action to correct critical safety 
        defects that are known to contribute to derailments, accidents, 
        or injury. In implementing the requirements of this paragraph, 
        the Secretary shall take into consideration existing training 
        programs of railroad carriers.''.
  (b) Table of Sections Amendment.--The table of sections of subchapter 
II of chapter 201 of title 49, United States Code, is amended by adding 
at the end the following new item:

``20161. Minimum training standards.''.

SEC. 606. PROMPT MEDICAL ATTENTION.

  (a) Amendment.--Subchapter II of chapter 201 of title 49, United 
States Code, as amended by this Act, is further amended by adding at 
the end the following new section:

``Sec. 20162. Prompt medical attention

  ``(a) Prohibition.--A railroad or person covered under this title 
shall not deny, delay, or interfere with the medical or first aid 
treatment of an employee who is injured during the course of 
employment. If transportation to a hospital is requested by an employee 
who is injured during the course of employment, the railroad shall 
promptly arrange to have the injured employee transported to the 
nearest medically appropriate hospital.
  ``(b) Discipline.--A railroad or person covered under this title 
shall not discipline, or threaten discipline to, an employee for 
requesting medical or first aid treatment, or for following orders or a 
treatment plan of a treating physician. For purposes of this 
subsection, discipline means to bring charges against a person in a 
disciplinary proceeding, suspend, terminate, place on probation, or 
make note of reprimand on an employee's record.''.
  (b) Table of Sections Amendment.--The table of sections of subchapter 
II of chapter 201 of title 49, United States Code, is amended by adding 
at the end the following new item:

``20162. Prompt medical attention.''.

SEC. 607. EMERGENCY ESCAPE BREATHING APPARATUS.

  (a) Amendment.--Subchapter II of chapter 201 of title 49, United 
States Code, as amended by this Act, is further amended by adding at 
the end the following new section:

``Sec. 20163. Emergency escape breathing apparatus

  ``Not later than 18 months after the date of enactment of the Federal 
Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007, the Secretary of 
Transportation shall prescribe regulations that require railroads to--
          ``(1) provide emergency escape breathing apparatus for all 
        crewmembers on freight trains carrying hazardous materials that 
        would pose an inhalation hazard in the event of release; and
          ``(2) provide their crewmembers with appropriate training for 
        using the breathing apparatus.''.
  (b) Table of Sections Amendment.--The table of sections of subchapter 
II of chapter 201 of title 49, United States Code, is amended by adding 
at the end the following new item:

``20163. Emergency escape breathing apparatus.''.

SEC. 608. LOCOMOTIVE CAB ENVIRONMENT.

  Not later than 12 months after the date of enactment of this Act, the 
Secretary of Transportation shall transmit to the Committee on 
Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives and 
the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate a 
report on the effects of the locomotive cab environment on the safety, 
health, and performance of train crews.

SEC. 609. TUNNEL INFORMATION.

  Not later than 120 days after the date of enactment of this Act, each 
railroad carrier (as defined in section 20102 of title 49, United 
States Code) shall, with respect to each of its tunnels which--
          (1) are longer than 1000 feet and located under a city with a 
        population of 400,000 or greater; or
          (2) carry 5 or more scheduled passenger trains per day, or 
        500 or more carloads of Toxic Inhalation Hazardous materials 
        per year,
maintain for at least two years historical documentation of structural 
inspection and maintenance activities for such tunnels, including 
information on the methods of ingress and egress into and out of the 
tunnel, the types of cargos typically transported through the tunnel, 
and schematics or blueprints for the tunnel, when available. Upon 
request, a railroad carrier shall also provide periodic briefings to 
the government of the local jurisdiction in which the tunnel is 
located, including updates whenever a repair or rehabilitation project 
substantially alters the methods of ingress and egress. Such 
governments shall use appropriate means to protect and restrict the 
distribution of any security sensitive information provided by the 
railroad carrier under this section, consistent with national security 
interests.

SEC. 610. RAILROAD POLICE.

  Section 28101 of title 49, United States Code, is amended by striking 
``the rail carrier'' each place it appears and inserting ``any rail 
carrier''.

SEC. 611. MUSEUM LOCOMOTIVE STUDY.

  (a) Study.--The Secretary of Transportation shall conduct a study of 
its regulations relating to safety inspections of diesel-electric 
locomotives and equipment and the safety consequences of requiring less 
frequent inspections of such locomotives which are operated by museums, 
including annual inspections or inspections based on accumulated 
operating hours. The study shall include an analysis of the safety 
consequences of requiring less frequent air brake inspections of such 
locomotives.
  (b) Report.--Not later than 12 months after the date of enactment of 
this Act, the Secretary of Transportation shall transmit a report on 
the results of the study conducted under subsection (a) to the 
Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of 
Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and 
Transportation of the Senate.

SEC. 612. CERTIFICATION OF CARMEN.

  (a) Amendment.--Subchapter II of chapter 201 of title 49, United 
States Code, as amended by this Act, is further amended by adding at 
the end the following new section:

``Sec. 20164. Certification of carmen

  ``(a) Regulations.--Not later than 18 months after the date of 
enactment of the Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007, the 
Secretary of Transportation shall prescribe regulations and issue 
orders to establish a program requiring the certification of carmen, 
including all employees performing mechanical inspections, brake system 
inspections, or maintenance on freight and passenger rail cars.
  ``(b) Program Design.--The program established under this section 
shall be designed by the Secretary of Transportation based on the 
requirements of parts 215, 221, 231, 232, and 238 of title 49 of the 
Code of Federal Regulations.''.
  (b) Table of Sections Amendment.--The table of sections of subchapter 
II of chapter 201 of title 49, United States Code, is amended by adding 
at the end the following new item:

``20164. Certification of carmen.''.

SEC. 613. TRAIN CONTROL SYSTEMS DEPLOYMENT GRANTS.

  (a) Grant Program.--The Secretary of Transportation shall establish a 
grant program for the deployment of train control and component 
technologies, including--
          (1) communications-based train control systems designed to 
        prevent train movement authority violations, over-speed 
        violations, and train collision accidents caused by 
        noncompliance with authorities as well as to provide additional 
        protections to roadway workers and protect against open 
        switches in nonsignal territories;
          (2) remote control power switch technology;
          (3) switch point monitoring technology; and
          (4) track integrity circuit technology.
  (b) Grant Criteria.--
          (1) Eligibility.--Grants shall be made under this section to 
        eligible passenger and freight railroad carriers and State and 
        local governments for projects described in subsection (a) that 
        have a public benefit of improved safety or network efficiency.
          (2) Implementation plan.--An applicant for a grant made 
        pursuant to this section shall file with the Secretary a train 
        control implementation plan that shall describe the overall 
        safety and efficiency benefits of installing systems described 
        in subsection (a) and the stages for implementing such systems.
          (3) Consideration.--The Secretary shall give priority 
        consideration to applications that benefit both passenger and 
        freight safety and efficiency, or incentivize train control 
        technology deployment on high-risk corridors such as those that 
        have significant movements of hazardous materials or where 
        commuter and intercity passenger railroads operate.
  (c) Authorization of Appropriations.--(1) There are authorized to be 
appropriated to the Secretary such sums as may be necessary for each of 
fiscal years 2008 through 2011 to carry out this section.
  (2) Amounts made available pursuant to this subsection shall remain 
available until expended.

SEC. 614. INFRASTRUCTURE SAFETY INVESTMENT REPORTS.

  Not later than February 15th of each year, each Class I railroad 
shall file a report with both the Federal Railroad Safety 
Administration and the Surface Transportation Board detailing, by 
State, the infrastructure investments and maintenance they have 
performed on their system, including but not limited to track, 
locomotives, railcars, and grade crossings, in the previous calendar 
year to ensure the safe movement of freight, and their plans for such 
investments and maintenance in the current calendar year. Such reports 
shall be publicly available, and any interested party may file comments 
about the reports, which also shall be made public.

SEC. 615. EMERGENCY GRADE CROSSING SAFETY IMPROVEMENTS.

  (a) Establishment of Program.--The Secretary of Transportation shall 
establish a grant program to provide for emergency grade crossing 
safety improvements, including the installation, repair, or improvement 
of--
          (1) railroad crossing signals, gates, and related 
        technologies, including median barriers and four quadrant 
        gates;
          (2) highway traffic signalization, including highway signals 
        tied to railroad signal systems;
          (3) highway lighting and crossing approach signage;
          (4) roadway improvements, including railroad crossing panels 
        and surfaces; and
          (5) related work to mitigate dangerous conditions.
  (b) Grant Criteria.--
          (1) Eligibility.--The Secretary may make grants to State and 
        local governments under this section to provide emergency grade 
        crossing safety improvements at a location where there has been 
        a railroad grade crossing collision with a school bus, or 
        collision involving three or more serious bodily injuries or 
        fatalities.
          (2) Maximum amount.--Grants awarded under paragraph (1) shall 
        not exceed $250,000 per crossing.
          (3) No state or local share.--The Secretary shall not require 
        the contribution of a State or local share as a condition of 
        the grant.
  (c) Authorization of Appropriations.--There are authorized to be 
appropriated to the Secretary such sums as may be necessary for each of 
fiscal years 2008 through 2011 to carry out this section. Amounts made 
available under this subsection shall remain available until expended.

SEC. 616. CLARIFICATIONS REGARDING STATE LAW CAUSES OF ACTION.

  Section 20106 of title 49, United States Code, is amended--
          (1) by inserting ``(a) In General.--'' before ``Laws, 
        regulations''; and
          (2) by inserting at the end the following new subsection:
  ``(b) Clarifications Regarding State Law Causes of Action.--
          ``(1) In general.--Nothing in this section shall be construed 
        to preempt an action under State law seeking damages for 
        personal injury, death, or property damage alleging that a 
        party has violated the Federal standard of care established by 
        a regulation or order issued by the Secretary of Transportation 
        (with respect to railroad safety matters), or the Secretary of 
        Homeland Security (with respect to the railroad security 
        matters) covering the subject matter as provided in subsection 
        (a) of this section. This includes actions under State law for 
        a party's violation of or failure to adequately comply with its 
        own plan, rule, or standard that it created pursuant to a 
        regulation or order issued by either of the Secretaries or for 
        a party's failure to adequately comply with a law, regulation, 
        or order issued by either of the Secretaries. Actions under 
        State law for a violation of a State law, regulation, or order 
        that is not inconsistent with subsection (a)(2) are also not 
        preempted.
          ``(2) Retroactivity.--This subsection shall apply to all 
        pending State law causes of action arising from events or 
        activities occurring on or after January 18, 2002.''.

          TITLE VII--RAIL PASSENGER DISASTER FAMILY ASSISTANCE

SEC. 701. SHORT TITLE.

  This title may be cited as the ``Rail Passenger Disaster Family 
Assistance Act of 2007''.

SEC. 702. ASSISTANCE BY NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION SAFETY BOARD TO 
                    FAMILIES OF PASSENGERS INVOLVED IN RAIL PASSENGER 
                    ACCIDENTS.

  (a) In General.--Subchapter III of chapter 11 of title 49, United 
States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following:

``Sec. 1139. Assistance to families of passengers involved in rail 
                    passenger accidents

  ``(a) In General.--As soon as practicable after being notified of a 
rail passenger accident within the United States involving a rail 
passenger carrier and resulting in a major loss of life, the Chairman 
of the National Transportation Safety Board shall--
          ``(1) designate and publicize the name and phone number of a 
        director of family support services who shall be an employee of 
        the Board and shall be responsible for acting as a point of 
        contact within the Federal Government for the families of 
        passengers involved in the accident and a liaison between the 
        rail passenger carrier and the families; and
          ``(2) designate an independent nonprofit organization, with 
        experience in disasters and posttrauma communication with 
        families, which shall have primary responsibility for 
        coordinating the emotional care and support of the families of 
        passengers involved in the accident.
  ``(b) Responsibilities of the Board.--The Board shall have primary 
Federal responsibility for--
          ``(1) facilitating the recovery and identification of fatally 
        injured passengers involved in an accident described in 
        subsection (a); and
          ``(2) communicating with the families of passengers involved 
        in the accident as to the roles of--
                  ``(A) the organization designated for an accident 
                under subsection (a)(2);
                  ``(B) Government agencies; and
                  ``(C) the rail passenger carrier involved,
        with respect to the accident and the post-accident activities.
  ``(c) Responsibilities of Designated Organization.--The organization 
designated for an accident under subsection (a)(2) shall have the 
following responsibilities with respect to the families of passengers 
involved in the accident:
          ``(1) To provide mental health and counseling services, in 
        coordination with the disaster response team of the rail 
        passenger carrier involved.
          ``(2) To take such actions as may be necessary to provide an 
        environment in which the families may grieve in private.
          ``(3) To meet with the families who have traveled to the 
        location of the accident, to contact the families unable to 
        travel to such location, and to contact all affected families 
        periodically thereafter until such time as the organization, in 
        consultation with the director of family support services 
        designated for the accident under subsection (a)(1), determines 
        that further assistance is no longer needed.
          ``(4) To arrange a suitable memorial service, in consultation 
        with the families.
  ``(d) Passenger Lists.--
          ``(1) Requests for passenger lists.--
                  ``(A) Requests by director of family support 
                services.--It shall be the responsibility of the 
                director of family support services designated for an 
                accident under subsection (a)(1) to request, as soon as 
                practicable, from the rail passenger carrier involved 
                in the accident a list, which is based on the best 
                available information at the time of the request, of 
                the names of the passengers that were aboard the rail 
                passenger carrier's train involved in the accident. A 
                rail passenger carrier shall use reasonable efforts, 
                with respect to its unreserved trains, and passengers 
                not holding reservations on its other trains, to 
                ascertain the names of passengers aboard a train 
                involved in an accident.
                  ``(B) Requests by designated organization.--The 
                organization designated for an accident under 
                subsection (a)(2) may request from the rail passenger 
                carrier involved in the accident a list described in 
                subparagraph (A).
          ``(2) Use of information.--The director of family support 
        services and the organization may not release to any person 
        information on a list obtained under paragraph (1) but may 
        provide information on the list about a passenger to the family 
        of the passenger to the extent that the director of family 
        support services or the organization considers appropriate.
  ``(e) Continuing Responsibilities of the Board.--In the course of its 
investigation of an accident described in subsection (a), the Board 
shall, to the maximum extent practicable, ensure that the families of 
passengers involved in the accident--
          ``(1) are briefed, prior to any public briefing, about the 
        accident and any other findings from the investigation; and
          ``(2) are individually informed of and allowed to attend any 
        public hearings and meetings of the Board about the accident.
  ``(f) Use of Rail Passenger Carrier Resources.--To the extent 
practicable, the organization designated for an accident under 
subsection (a)(2) shall coordinate its activities with the rail 
passenger carrier involved in the accident to facilitate the reasonable 
use of the resources of the carrier.
  ``(g) Prohibited Actions.--
          ``(1) Actions to impede the board.--No person (including a 
        State or political subdivision) may impede the ability of the 
        Board (including the director of family support services 
        designated for an accident under subsection (a)(1)), or an 
        organization designated for an accident under subsection 
        (a)(2), to carry out its responsibilities under this section or 
        the ability of the families of passengers involved in the 
        accident to have contact with one another.
          ``(2) Unsolicited communications.--No unsolicited 
        communication concerning a potential action for personal injury 
        or wrongful death may be made by an attorney (including any 
        associate, agent, employee, or other representative of an 
        attorney) or any potential party to the litigation to an 
        individual (other than an employee of the rail passenger 
        carrier) injured in the accident, or to a relative of an 
        individual involved in the accident, before the 45th day 
        following the date of the accident.
          ``(3) Prohibition on actions to prevent mental health and 
        counseling services.--No State or political subdivision may 
        prevent the employees, agents, or volunteers of an organization 
        designated for an accident under subsection (a)(2) from 
        providing mental health and counseling services under 
        subsection (c)(1) in the 30-day period beginning on the date of 
        the accident. The director of family support services 
        designated for the accident under subsection (a)(1) may extend 
        such period for not to exceed an additional 30 days if the 
        director determines that the extension is necessary to meet the 
        needs of the families and if State and local authorities are 
        notified of the determination.
  ``(h) Definitions.--In this section, the following definitions apply:
          ``(1) Rail passenger accident.--The term `rail passenger 
        accident' means any rail passenger disaster occurring in the 
        provision of--
                  ``(A) interstate intercity rail passenger 
                transportation (as such term is defined in section 
                24102); or
                  ``(B) interstate or intrastate high-speed rail (as 
                such term is defined in section 26105) transportation,
        regardless of its cause or suspected cause.
          ``(2) Rail passenger carrier.--The term `rail passenger 
        carrier' means a rail carrier providing--
                  ``(A) interstate intercity rail passenger 
                transportation (as such term is defined in section 
                24102); or
                  ``(B) interstate or intrastate high-speed rail (as 
                such term is defined in section 26105) transportation,
        except that such term shall not include a tourist, historic, 
        scenic, or excursion rail carrier.
          ``(3) Passenger.--The term `passenger' includes--
                  ``(A) an employee of a rail passenger carrier aboard 
                a train;
                  ``(B) any other person aboard the train without 
                regard to whether the person paid for the 
                transportation, occupied a seat, or held a reservation 
                for the rail transportation; and
                  ``(C) any other person injured or killed in the 
                accident.
  ``(i) Limitation on Statutory Construction.--Nothing in this section 
may be construed as limiting the actions that a rail passenger carrier 
may take, or the obligations that a rail passenger carrier may have, in 
providing assistance to the families of passengers involved in a rail 
passenger accident.
  ``(j) Relinquishment of Investigative Priority.--
          ``(1) General rule.--This section (other than subsection (g)) 
        shall not apply to a railroad accident if the Board has 
        relinquished investigative priority under section 1131(a)(2)(B) 
        and the Federal agency to which the Board relinquished 
        investigative priority is willing and able to provide 
        assistance to the victims and families of the passengers 
        involved in the accident.
          ``(2) Board assistance.--If this section does not apply to a 
        railroad accident because the Board has relinquished 
        investigative priority with respect to the accident, the Board 
        shall assist, to the maximum extent possible, the agency to 
        which the Board has relinquished investigative priority in 
        assisting families with respect to the accident.''.
  (b) Conforming Amendment.--The table of sections for such chapter is 
amended by inserting after the item relating to section 1138 the 
following:

``1139. Assistance to families of passengers involved in rail passenger 
accidents.''.

SEC. 703. RAIL PASSENGER CARRIER PLANS TO ADDRESS NEEDS OF FAMILIES OF 
                    PASSENGERS INVOLVED IN RAIL PASSENGER ACCIDENTS.

  (a) In General.--Part C of subtitle V of title 49, United States 
Code, is amended by adding at the end the following new chapter:

                    ``CHAPTER 251--FAMILY ASSISTANCE

``Sec.
``25101. Plans to address needs of families of passengers involved in 
rail passenger accidents.

``Sec. 25101. Plans to address needs of families of passengers involved 
                    in rail passenger accidents

  ``(a) Submission of Plans.--Not later than 6 months after the date of 
the enactment of this section, each rail passenger carrier shall submit 
to the Secretary of Transportation and the Chairman of the National 
Transportation Safety Board a plan for addressing the needs of the 
families of passengers involved in any rail passenger accident 
involving a train of the rail passenger carrier and resulting in a 
major loss of life.
  ``(b) Contents of Plans.--A plan to be submitted by a rail passenger 
carrier under subsection (a) shall include, at a minimum, the 
following:
          ``(1) A plan for publicizing a reliable, toll-free telephone 
        number, and for providing staff, to handle calls from the 
        families of the passengers.
          ``(2) A process for notifying the families of the passengers, 
        before providing any public notice of the names of the 
        passengers, either by utilizing the services of the 
        organization designated for the accident under section 
        1139(a)(2) of this title or the services of other suitably 
        trained individuals.
          ``(3) An assurance that the notice described in paragraph (2) 
        will be provided to the family of a passenger as soon as the 
        rail passenger carrier has verified that the passenger was 
        aboard the train (whether or not the names of all of the 
        passengers have been verified) and, to the extent practicable, 
        in person.
          ``(4) An assurance that the rail passenger carrier will 
        provide to the director of family support services designated 
        for the accident under section 1139(a)(1) of this title, and to 
        the organization designated for the accident under section 
        1139(a)(2) of this title, immediately upon request, a list 
        (which is based on the best available information at the time 
        of the request) of the names of the passengers aboard the train 
        (whether or not such names have been verified), and will 
        periodically update the list. The plan shall include a 
        procedure, with respect to unreserved trains and passengers not 
        holding reservations on other trains, for the rail passenger 
        carrier to use reasonable efforts to ascertain the names of 
        passengers aboard a train involved in an accident.
          ``(5) An assurance that the family of each passenger will be 
        consulted about the disposition of all remains and personal 
        effects of the passenger within the control of the rail 
        passenger carrier.
          ``(6) An assurance that if requested by the family of a 
        passenger, any possession of the passenger within the control 
        of the rail passenger carrier (regardless of its condition) 
        will be returned to the family unless the possession is needed 
        for the accident investigation or any criminal investigation.
          ``(7) An assurance that any unclaimed possession of a 
        passenger within the control of the rail passenger carrier will 
        be retained by the rail passenger carrier for at least 18 
        months.
          ``(8) An assurance that the family of each passenger or other 
        person killed in the accident will be consulted about 
        construction by the rail passenger carrier of any monument to 
        the passengers, including any inscription on the monument.
          ``(9) An assurance that the treatment of the families of 
        nonrevenue passengers will be the same as the treatment of the 
        families of revenue passengers.
          ``(10) An assurance that the rail passenger carrier will work 
        with any organization designated under section 1139(a)(2) of 
        this title on an ongoing basis to ensure that families of 
        passengers receive an appropriate level of services and 
        assistance following each accident.
          ``(11) An assurance that the rail passenger carrier will 
        provide reasonable compensation to any organization designated 
        under section 1139(a)(2) of this title for services provided by 
        the organization.
          ``(12) An assurance that the rail passenger carrier will 
        assist the family of a passenger in traveling to the location 
        of the accident and provide for the physical care of the family 
        while the family is staying at such location.
          ``(13) An assurance that the rail passenger carrier will 
        commit sufficient resources to carry out the plan.
          ``(14) An assurance that the rail passenger carrier will 
        provide adequate training to the employees and agents of the 
        carrier to meet the needs of survivors and family members 
        following an accident.
          ``(15) An assurance that, upon request of the family of a 
        passenger, the rail passenger carrier will inform the family of 
        whether the passenger's name appeared on any preliminary 
        passenger manifest for the train involved in the accident.
  ``(c) Limitation on Liability.--A rail passenger carrier shall not be 
liable for damages in any action brought in a Federal or State court 
arising out of the performance of the rail passenger carrier in 
preparing or providing a passenger list, or in providing information 
concerning a train reservation, pursuant to a plan submitted by the 
rail passenger carrier under subsection (b), unless such liability was 
caused by conduct of the rail passenger carrier which was grossly 
negligent or which constituted intentional misconduct.
  ``(d) Definitions.--In this section--
          ``(1) the terms `rail passenger accident' and `rail passenger 
        carrier' have the meanings such terms have in section 1139 of 
        this title; and
          ``(2) the term `passenger' means a person aboard a rail 
        passenger carrier's train that is involved in a rail passenger 
        accident.
  ``(e) Limitation on Statutory Construction.--Nothing in this section 
may be construed as limiting the actions that a rail passenger carrier 
may take, or the obligations that a rail passenger carrier may have, in 
providing assistance to the families of passengers involved in a rail 
passenger accident.''.
  (b) Conforming Amendment.--The table of chapters for subtitle V of 
title 49, United States Code, is amended by adding after the item 
relating to chapter 249 the following new item:

``251. FAMILY ASSISTANCE....................................   25101''.

SEC. 704. ESTABLISHMENT OF TASK FORCE.

  (a) Establishment.--The Secretary of Transportation, in cooperation 
with the National Transportation Safety Board, organizations 
potentially designated under section 1139(a)(2) of title 49, United 
States Code, rail passenger carriers, and families which have been 
involved in rail accidents, shall establish a task force consisting of 
representatives of such entities and families, representatives of 
passenger rail carrier employees, and representatives of such other 
entities as the Secretary considers appropriate.
  (b) Model Plan and Recommendations.--The task force established 
pursuant to subsection (a) shall develop--
          (1) a model plan to assist passenger rail carriers in 
        responding to passenger rail accidents;
          (2) recommendations on methods to improve the timeliness of 
        the notification provided by passenger rail carriers to the 
        families of passengers involved in a passenger rail accident;
          (3) recommendations on methods to ensure that the families of 
        passengers involved in a passenger rail accident who are not 
        citizens of the United States receive appropriate assistance; 
        and
          (4) recommendations on methods to ensure that emergency 
        services personnel have as immediate and accurate a count of 
        the number of passengers on board the train as possible.
  (c) Report.--Not later than 1 year after the date of the enactment of 
this Act, the Secretary shall transmit to Congress a report containing 
the model plan and recommendations developed by the task force under 
subsection (b).

                       Purpose of the Legislation

    H.R. 2095 reauthorizes the Federal Railroad Administration 
and establishes safety measures to prevent railroad fatalities, 
injuries, and hazardous materials releases.

                  Background and Need for Legislation

    The Subcommittee on Railroads, Pipelines, and Hazardous 
Materials has jurisdiction over rail safety and programs 
administered by the Federal Railroad Administration (``FRA''). 
The FRA is one of 10 modal agencies within the U.S. Department 
of Transportation (``DOT''). It was created in 1966 by the 
Department of Transportation Act, when all safety 
responsibilities of the Interstate Commerce Commission were 
transferred to the DOT.
    The FRA's safety responsibilities were further enhanced by 
the Federal Railroad Safety Act of 1970, the Federal Railroad 
Safety Authorization Act of 1973, the Federal Railroad Safety 
and Hazardous Materials Transportation Amendments of 1974, the 
Federal Railroad Safety Authorization Act of 1976, the Federal 
Railroad Safety Amendments Act of 1978, the Federal Railroad 
Safety Authorization Act of 1980, the Railroad Safety and 
Service Improvement Act of 1982, the Rail Safety Improvement 
Act of 1988, the Railroad Safety Enforcement and Review Act of 
1991, and the Federal Railroad Safety Authorization Act of 
1994.
    One of the main responsibilities of the FRA is to 
promulgate and enforce rail safety regulations. It also 
conducts research and development in support of improved rail 
safety. In addition, the FRA has a number of responsibilities 
relating to rail security, including assessing civil and 
criminal penalties for actions that impair or impede the 
operation of railroad equipment.
    The FRA has the authority to issue regulations and orders 
pertaining to rail safety and security and to issue civil and 
criminal penalties to enforce those regulations and orders. 
Under current law, all laws, regulations, and orders related to 
rail safety and security must be nationally uniform to the 
extent practicable. A State may adopt or continue in force a 
law, regulation, or order related to rail safety or security 
until the Secretary of Transportation or the Secretary of 
Homeland Security prescribes a regulation or issues an order 
covering the subject matter of the State requirement. A State 
may adopt or continue in force an additional or more stringent 
law, regulation, or order only in instances where the law, 
regulation, or order is necessary to eliminate or reduce an 
essentially local safety or security hazard; is not 
incompatible with a law, regulation, or order of the United 
States Government; and does not unreasonably burden interstate 
commerce.
    The preemption standard has been a concern among some 
states and localities that have tried to adopt regulations 
requiring trains to operate at slower speeds and railroads to 
re-route hazardous materials around heavily populated areas. 
(The routing of trains is subject to the jurisdiction of the 
Surface Transportation Board.) The preemption standard has also 
been an issue for rail accident victims who are seeking relief 
for injuries or damages from the railroads in court. A number 
of recent Federal court decisions surprisingly reached the 
conclusion that the standard does not just preempt state or 
local regulations that conflict with Federal regulations, but 
also preempts state tort liability law, thereby preventing the 
injured parties from bringing a state suit against the carrier. 
See Lundeen v. Canadian Pacific Railway. Co., __F.3d__ (No. 05-
1918, 8th Cir., May 16, 2006); Mehl v. Canadian Pacific 
Railway. Ltd., (No. 4-02-cv-009, D.N.D. March 6, 2006). 
Congress disagreed with the Federal court decisions related to 
the Minot, North Dakota accident and adopted a provision to 
clarify the intent and interpretations of the existing 
preemption statute in Public Law 110-259, the ``Implementing 
Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007'', which the 
President signed into law on August 3, 2007.
    P.L. 110-259 clarifies that section 20106 of title 49, 
United States Code, does not preempt State law causes of action 
where a party has failed to comply with the Federal standard of 
care established by a regulation or order issued by the 
Secretary of Transportation or the Secretary of Homeland 
Security, its own plan or standard that it created pursuant to 
a regulation or order issued by either of the Secretaries, or a 
State law, regulation, or order that is not incompatible with 
section 20106(a)(2). P.L. 110-259 also clarifies that section 
20106 applies to all pending State law causes of action arising 
from activities or events occurring on or after January 18, 
2002, the date of the Minot, North Dakota derailment.
    The FRA relies on 421 Federal safety inspectors and 160 
state safety inspectors to monitor the railroads' compliance 
with federally mandated safety standards. The Federal 
inspectors work in eight regional offices and are divided into 
five safety disciplines--Track and Structures, Signal and Train 
Control, Motive Power and Equipment, Operating Practices, 
Hazardous Materials, and Drug and Alcohol. They also promote 
numerous initiatives under the Highway-Rail Grade Crossing and 
Trespasser Prevention Programs.
    Central to the success of the Federal rail safety program 
is the ability to understand the nature of rail-related 
accidents and to analyze trends in railroad safety. To do this, 
the FRA relies heavily on information that is reported by the 
railroads following accidents and incidents. Railroad accident 
reports attribute more than 90 percent of grade crossing 
collisions to motorists. According to the DOT Inspector General 
(``Inspector General''), the FRA does not routinely review 
locomotive event recorder data, police reports, and other 
sources of information to determine the causes of the 
collisions or the need for further investigation.
    The Inspector General also found that the FRA investigated 
few accidents and recommended few findings of critical safety 
defects identified through inspections. The FRA investigates 
two-tenths of one percent of all accidents and incidents 
involving railroads. With regard to findings of violations, 
from 2002 through 2004, FRA inspectors identified 7,490 
critical safety defects out of 69,405 total safety defects 
related to automated grade crossing warning signals. Yet, FRA 
recommended only 347 critical defects, or about five percent, 
for findings of violations that carry a fine. According to the 
Inspector General, the FRA's policy of inspectors using their 
discretion in deciding whether to recommend a violation has 
resulted in the small number of critical defects recommended 
for violations. Furthermore, after violations are determined, 
Federal law allows the FRA to negotiate-down the amount of 
civil penalties proposed, resulting in the collection of lower 
penalties, despite the many critical safety defects found.
    Over the past 30 years, the number of train accidents has 
been reduced significantly. Since 1978, there has been a 71 
percent decline in train accidents. Total rail-related 
fatalities declined 46 percent and total employee cases (fatal 
and nonfatal) have dropped 91 percent. According to the Bureau 
of Labor Statistics, the rail industry is currently rated safer 
than trucking, construction, and aviation.
    However, in recent years, the total number of train 
accidents has increased significantly. Since the FRA was last 
reauthorized in 1994, the total number of train accidents, 
including collisions and derailments, increased from 2,504 in 
1994 to 3,325 in 2005. In 2006, the number of train accidents 
decreased to 2,835. Although train accidents declined in 2006, 
it is unclear if this one-year progress will be sustained.
    In addition, serious accidents continue to occur. On 
January 6, 2005, Norfolk Southern train 192 traveling through 
Graniteville, South Carolina, encountered an improperly lined 
switch that diverted the train from the main line on to an 
industry track, where it struck an unoccupied, parked train 
(P22). The collision derailed both locomotives and 16 of the 42 
freight cars of train 192, as well as the locomotive and one of 
the two cars of train P22. Among the derailed cars from train 
192 were three tank cars containing chlorine, one of which was 
breached, releasing chlorine gas. The train engineer and eight 
other people died as a result of chlorine gas inhalation. About 
554 people complaining of respiratory difficulties were taken 
to local hospitals. Of these people, 75 were admitted for 
treatment. Because of the chlorine release, about 5,400 people 
within a one-mile radius of the derailment site were evacuated 
for several days. Total damages exceeded $6.9 million.
    On June 28, 2004, a westbound Union Pacific (``UP'') train 
traveling on the same main line track as an eastbound BNSF 
train near Macdona, Texas, struck the midpoint of the 123-car 
BNSF train as it was leaving the main line to enter a parallel 
siding. The collision derailed four locomotive units and the 
first 19 cars of the UP train as well as 17 cars of the BNSF 
train. As a result of the derailment, the sixteenth car of the 
UP train, a pressure tank car loaded with liquefied chlorine, 
ruptured. Chlorine escaping from the punctured car immediately 
vaporized into a cloud of chlorine gas that engulfed the 
accident area to a radius of 700 feet. Three people died, 
including the conductor of the UP train and two local 
residents, as a result of chlorine gas inhalation. The UP 
engineer, 23 civilians, and six emergency responders were 
treated for respiratory distress and other injuries.
    On January 18, 2002, a Canadian Pacific freight train 
derailed 31 of its 112 cars about one-half mile west of the 
city limits of Minot, North Dakota. Five tank cars carrying 
anhydrous ammonia, a liquefied compressed gas, catastrophically 
ruptured, and a vapor plume covered the derailment site and 
surrounding area. One resident was fatally injured, 11 people 
sustained serious injuries, and 322 people, including the two 
train crewmembers, sustained minor injuries. Damages exceeded 
$2 million, and more than $8 million has been spent for 
environmental remediation.

                       HUMAN FACTORS AND FATIGUE

    Human factors are responsible for nearly 40 percent of all 
train accidents, and the FRA reports that fatigue plays a role 
in approximately one of four accidents caused by human factors. 
The National Transportation Safety Board's (``NTSB'') in-depth 
investigations of accidents have also demonstrated that fatigue 
is a major factor in transportation accidents. According to the 
NTSB, ``the current railroad hours-of-service laws permit, and 
many railroad carriers require, the most burdensome fatigue-
inducing work schedule of any federally-regulated 
transportation mode in this country.''
    A commercial airline pilot (part 121) can work up to 100 
hours per month; a commercial airline pilot (part 135) can work 
up to 120 hours per month; shipboard personnel (ocean going) 
can work up to 360 hours per month; and a truck driver can be 
on-duty up to 350 hours per month. Meanwhile, train crews can 
operate a train up to 432 hours per month. That equates to more 
than 14 hours a day for each of those 30 days.
    On numerous occasions, the NTSB has recommended that the 
FRA establish within two years scientifically based hours-of-
service regulations that set limits on hours-of-service, 
provide predictable work and rest schedules, and consider 
circadian rhythms and human sleep and rest requirements. 
However, the FRA is the only modal administration within DOT 
that has hours-of-service standards mandated by statute and, 
therefore, may not be adjusted or modified by administrative 
procedures.
    The Hours of Service Act was first enacted in 1907; it was 
last substantially amended in 1969. Since that time, a number 
of serious train accidents have occurred as a result of 
operator fatigue. One of the issues of concern relating to 
fatigue is ``limbo time''. Limbo time is a term used to 
describe the period of time when a train operating crew's 
hours-of-service has expired, but the crew has not yet arrived 
at their point of final release, which is the off-duty location 
or terminal point where the crew can go home or obtain food and 
lodging at an away-from-home terminal. Limbo time also accrues 
for train operating crews whose trains are stopped on a line of 
track, frequently due to the expiration of their 12-hour on-
duty time limit, before they reach their destination terminal 
(point of final release). Limbo time accrues from the time the 
train is stopped until the crew arrives at the final release 
point, and includes time spent in transportation to their final 
release point, as well as time spent waiting for transportation 
to pick them up from their train.
    During limbo-time, crew members are required to stay awake, 
alert, and able to respond to any situation and follow the 
railroad's operating rules. Although current law does not 
classify limbo time as either on-duty or off-duty time, any 
required minimum rest period does not begin until the limbo 
time period ends. Limbo time can and has kept railroad 
operating crews effectively on-duty for significantly more than 
the 12-hour on-duty time limit. For instance, in the 2004 
Macdona, Texas train accident, the UP engineer worked for 22 
hours (12 hours on-duty and 10 hours of limbo time).
    As a result of that accident, the NTSB concluded, ``[t]he 
minimum rest periods prescribed by Federal regulations do not 
take into account either rotating work schedules or the 
accumulated hours spent working and in limbo time, both of 
which can affect the ability of an employee to obtain full rest 
and recuperation between job assignments.'' The NTSB 
recommended that the FRA require railroads to use 
scientifically based principles when assigning work schedules 
for train crew members, which consider factors that impact 
sleep needs, to reduce the effects of fatigue and establish 
requirements that limit train crewmember limbo time to address 
fatigue.
    The NTSB also stated that it ``remains concerned about the 
safety of railroad operations where backup systems are not 
available to intervene when, as in this accident, a train crew 
operates a train improperly or fails to comply with wayside 
signals. NTSB accident investigations over the past three 
decades have shown that the most effective way to prevent 
train-to-train collisions is through the use of a positive 
train control (``PTC'') system that will automatically assume 
some control of a train when the train crew does not comply 
with signal indications.''
    Over the years, the NTSB has issued a series of 
recommendations on PTC. In fact, PTC has remained on the 
Board's Most Wanted Transportation Safety Improvements list 
since 1990. The NTSB concluded that the Macdona, Texas, 
accident is ``another in a long series of railroad accidents 
that could have been prevented had there been a PTC system in 
place at the accident location.''

                        TRACK-RELATED ACCIDENTS

    In 2006, defective track was the leading cause of all train 
accidents. Prior to 2006, it was either the leading or second 
leading cause of all train accidents. A series of recent high-
profile accidents have called into question the adequacy of 
track safety regulations, the railroads' track inspection and 
maintenance programs, and the FRA's oversight of those 
programs.
    On March 12, 2007, a CSX train derailed in Oneida, New 
York. The cause was defective track. It was one of a series of 
accidents in Upstate New York, and the FRA launched a rail 
inspection project to check 1,300 miles of CSX track across New 
York State for flaws that might lead to a train derailment. On 
April 18, 2007, the FRA announced that it had found 78 track 
defects and one serious violation during the audit. The FRA's 
ongoing review of rail safety in New York has now been expanded 
to other railroads.
    On April 3, 2005, a westbound Amtrak train derailed on 
BNSF's tracks in Home Valley, Washington. Thirty passengers 
sustained minor injuries; 14 of those people were taken to 
local hospitals. Track and equipment damages, in addition to 
clearing costs associated with the accident, totaled about 
$854,000. The NTSB determined that the cause of the accident 
was BNSF's inadequate response to multiple reports of rough 
track conditions that were subsequently attributed to excessive 
concrete crosstie abrasion, which allowed the outer rail to 
rotate outward and create a wide-gage track condition. 
Contributing to the accident was the FRA's failure to provide 
adequate track safety standards for concrete crossties.
    On April 6, 2004, an Amtrak train derailed on Canadian 
National-owned and maintained track near Flora, Mississippi. 
The entire train derailed, including one locomotive, one 
baggage car, and eight passenger cars. The derailment resulted 
in one fatality, three serious injuries, and 43 minor injuries. 
The equipment costs associated with the accident totaled about 
$7 million. In its Railroad Accident Report, the NTSB 
determined that the probable cause of the accident was ``the 
failure of the Canadian National Railway Company to properly 
maintain and inspect its track, resulting in rail shift and the 
subsequent derailment of the train, and the Federal Railroad 
Administration's ineffective oversight to ensure proper 
maintenance of the track by the railroad.''
    On October 16, 2004, a UP freight train derailed three 
locomotives and 11 cars near Pico Rivera, California. Small 
amounts of hazardous materials were released from the 
transported cargo. There were no injuries to area residents, 
the train crew, or the emergency response personnel. UP 
estimated the monetary damage at $2.7 million. In its Railroad 
Accident Report, the NTSB determined ``that the probable cause 
of the derailment was the failure of a pair of insulated joint 
bars due to fatigue cracking. Contributing to the accident was 
the lack of an adequate on-the-ground inspection program for 
identifying cracks in rail joint bars before they grow to 
critical size.''
    On January 18, 2002, a Canadian Pacific freight train 
derailed 31 of its 112 cars near Minot, North Dakota. Five tank 
cars carrying anhydrous ammonia, a liquefied compressed gas, 
catastrophically ruptured, and a vapor plume covered the 
derailment site and surrounding area. About 11,600 people that 
occupied the area were affected by the vapor plume. One 
resident was fatally injured, and 60 to 65 residents of the 
neighborhood nearest the derailment site were rescued. As a 
result of the accident, 11 people sustained serious injuries, 
and 322 people, including the two train crew members, sustained 
major injuries. Damages exceeded $2 million, and more than $8 
million has been spent in environmental remediation.
    In its Railroad Accident Report, the NTSB determined that 
the probable cause of the derailment was ``an ineffective 
Canadian Pacific Railway inspection and maintenance program 
that did not identify and replace cracked joint bars before 
they completely fractured and led to the breaking of the rail 
at the joint.'' The NTSB also found that the FRA's requirements 
regarding rail joint bars in continuous welded rail (``CWR'') 
were ineffective and that the FRA's oversight of Canadian 
Pacific's CWR program was ineffective, because the FRA neither 
reviewed the CWR program nor ensured that its track inspectors 
had copies of the CWR programs to determine if the railroad was 
in compliance with it.
    On March 17, 2001, a westbound Amtrak train traveling on 
BNSF tracks derailed near Nodaway, Iowa. As a result of the 
derailment, one person died and 77 people were injured. The 
NTSB determined that the probable cause of the derailment of 
the Amtrak train was the failure of the rail beneath the train, 
due to undetected internal defects. BNSF had failed to inspect 
the rail that it used to replace a defective rail. The 
replacement rail was also defective. According to the NTSB, 
contributing to the accident was the BNSF's lack of a 
comprehensive method for ensuring that replacement rail is free 
from internal defects.

                        GRADE-CROSSING ACCIDENTS

    There are 243,016 grade crossings in the United States, of 
which 149,628 (62 percent) are public crossings. Of these 
public crossings, 63,387 (42 percent) have automatic warning 
devices.
    Since the FRA was reauthorized in 1994, significant 
progress has been made in reducing collisions and fatalities at 
grade crossings. From 1994 to 2006, total train miles traveled 
in the United States increased from 655 million miles to 810 
million miles, and the total miles traveled by motor vehicle 
increased from 2.3 trillion miles to 2.9 trillion miles. During 
the same period, collisions at the nation's grade crossings 
have decreased from 4,979 in 1994 to 2,908 in 2006. Fatalities 
have also decreased from 615 in 1994 to 366 in 2006, and 
injuries have decreased from 1,961 to 1,006 during the same 
period.
    The Inspector General reports that this significant 
decrease was attributable to DOT addressing much of the ``low-
hanging fruit''; that is, working with the States and railroads 
to close grade crossings, install automatic gates and flashing 
lights at public crossings with a high probability for 
collisions, and educate the public about crossing safety. DOT 
also made progress in implementing safety initiatives included 
in its 1994 Grade Crossing Safety Action Plan.
    Recent audit reports of the Inspector General, however, 
show that DOT can do more to improve grade crossing safety. The 
audits were requested by Chairman Oberstar, Subcommittee on 
Railroads, Pipelines, and Hazardous Materials Chairwoman Brown, 
and former Senator Hollings in response to a series of New York 
Times articles that alleged problems with railroad accident 
reporting, investigations at grade crossings, and several other 
safety issues.
    The Inspector General found that railroads failed to report 
21 percent of reportable grade-crossing collisions to the 
National Response Center (``NRC''). Railroads are required to 
report grade-crossing collisions involving fatalities and/or 
multiple injuries to passengers or train crew members, and 
fatalities to motorists or pedestrians involved in grade-
crossing collisions to the NRC. Pursuant to FRA regulations, 
railroads are required to report accidents within two hours. 
Immediate reporting allows the Federal Government to decide 
whether or not to conduct an investigation shortly after a 
grade-crossing collision has occurred. The Inspector General's 
analysis showed that 115 of 543 (21 percent) reportable grade-
crossing collisions that occurred between May 1, 2003, and 
December 31, 2004, were not reported to the NRC as required by 
FRA regulations. Although the 115 unreported grade-crossing 
collisions, which resulted in 116 fatalities, were reported to 
the FRA within 30 to 60 days after the collision, the delayed 
reporting did not allow Federal authorities to promptly decide 
whether or not to conduct an investigation immediately after an 
accident. In July 2004, the FRA began reconciling its database 
with the NRC to identify unreported accidents. In March 2005, 
it began issuing findings of violations to railroads failing to 
follow reporting requirements.
    The Inspector General also found that the Federal 
Government investigated only a small number of grade-crossing 
collisions and needs to collect and analyze independent 
information on all grade-crossing collisions. From 2000 through 
2004, the FRA investigated 47 of 376 (13 percent) of the most 
serious grade-crossing collisions that occurred--those 
collisions resulting in three or more fatalities and/or severe 
injuries. No Federal investigations were conducted for the 
remaining 329 grade-crossing collisions. Those collisions 
resulted in 159 fatalities and 1,024 injuries. FRA officials 
stated that the NTSB is the lead Federal agency responsible for 
investigating railroad accidents, not the FRA. However, the 
NTSB tends to investigate only high-profile, grade-crossing 
collisions. For example, from 2000 though 2004, the NTSB 
conducted seven grade-crossing collision investigations. 
Consequently, the Federal Government did not independently 
investigate most grade-crossing collisions, but rather received 
information concerning the causes of collisions almost 
exclusively from the railroads.
    The railroads' grade-crossing accident reports attributed 
more than 90 percent of the collisions that occurred from 2000 
through 2004 to motorists, but the FRA did not conduct its own 
investigations to verify the causes. Independently collecting 
and analyzing information about grade-crossing collisions would 
substantially improve the FRA's ability to determine the causes 
of grade-crossing collisions and better target collisions that 
should be investigated further. The collection and analysis of 
this information is especially important given the limited 
resources of the FRA's inspection staff. Nationwide, 55 of 421 
FRA inspectors are assigned to inspect the 63,387 warning 
signal systems at grade crossings.
    The small number of FRA inspectors, combined with the 
extensiveness of the U.S. railroad system, limits the FRA's 
ability to investigate each accident or incident and inspect 
each railroad and mile of track. In 2004, the Federal Aviation 
Administration (``FAA'') conducted on-site investigations of 
1,392, or 93 percent, of the 1,484 general aviation accidents 
that the FAA had responsibility for investigating in 2004. 
Unlike the FRA, however, the FAA has an Office of Accident 
Investigations staffed with eight full-time investigators whose 
mission is to detect unsafe conditions and trends and to 
coordinate the process for corrective actions. In addition, the 
FAA uses personnel from other disciplines to conduct 
investigations, including 2,989 inspectors from its Office of 
Aviation Safety.
    The Inspector General also found that the FRA investigated 
few accidents and recommended few findings of violations for 
critical safety defects identified through inspections. 
According to the Government Accountability Office, the FRA 
investigates two-tenths of one percent of all railroad 
operations. From 2002 through 2004, for example, FRA inspectors 
identified 7,490 critical safety defects out of 69,405 total 
safety defects related to automated grade crossing warning 
signals. Yet, FRA recommended only 347 critical defects, or 
about five percent, for findings of violations that carry a 
fine. According to the Inspector General, the FRA's policy of 
inspectors using their discretion in deciding whether to 
recommend a violation has resulted in a small number of 
critical defects recommended for violations. Furthermore, after 
violations are determined, Federal law allows the FRA to 
negotiate-down the amount of civil penalties proposed, 
resulting in the collection of lower penalties, despite the 
many critical safety defects found. According to the Inspector 
General, on average, the FRA settles fines with the railroad at 
about 60 cents on the dollar.
    Finally, the Inspector General found that the FRA needed to 
do more to improve grade-crossing safety by addressing sight 
obstructions, including overgrown vegetation, permanent and 
temporary structures, and standing railroad equipment, that 
block highway users' view of approaching trains. Of the 15,416 
grade-crossing reports submitted by the railroads from 2001 
through 2005, 689 reports documented a sight obstruction. These 
689 collisions resulted in 87 fatalities and 242 injuries.
    Nationwide, there are nearly 76,000 public grade crossings 
that are not protected with automated warning devices. In 
coming years, many of these crossings will require the 
installation of warning devices as rail and highway traffic 
volumes increase. In addition, crossings currently equipped 
with warning lights may require the installation of crossing 
gates. This need is highlighted by an accident with multiple 
fatalities which occurred on Easter 2007. Three teenage 
students died when their car was struck by a freight train at a 
railroad crossing in Excelsior Springs, Missouri. The crossing 
was equipped with flashing warning signal lights, but no 
crossing gates.
    Currently, FRA regulations require the railroads to address 
vegetation growth at these public grade crossings. Some states 
have passed more stringent laws or issued more stringent 
regulations that address vegetation and other sight 
obstructions at grade crossings, but the FRA has no assurance 
that overgrown vegetation and sight obstructions are addressed 
in States that lack such laws.

                       Summary of the Legislation


Section 1. Short title; table of contents

    This section designates the title of the Act as the 
``Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007''.

Section 2. Definitions

    This section states that, for purposes of this Act, the 
terms ``railroad'' and ``railroad carrier'' have the meaning 
given those terms in section 20102 of title 49, United States 
Code.

            Title I. Federal Railroad Safety Administration


Section 101. Establishment of Federal Railroad Safety Administration

    This section amends section 103 of title 49, United States 
Code, to reestablish the Federal Railroad Administration as the 
Federal Railroad Safety Administration.
    This section also directs the Administration to consider 
the assignment of maintenance of safety as the highest 
priority, recognizing the clear intent, encouragement, and 
dedication of Congress to the furtherance of the highest degree 
of safety in railroad transportation. In addition, this section 
directs the Administration to have an Associate Administrator 
for Rail Safety appointed in the competitive service by the 
Secretary. The Associate Administrator shall be the Chief 
Safety Officer of the Administration, and shall carry out the 
duties and powers prescribed by the Administrator.

Section 102. Railroad safety strategy

    This section requires the Secretary of Transportation to 
develop a long-term strategy for improving rail safety, which 
must include an annual plan and schedules for reducing the 
number and rates of accidents, injuries, and fatalities 
involving railroads; improving the consistency and 
effectiveness of enforcement and compliance programs; 
identifying and targeting enforcement at, and safety 
improvements to, high-risk highway-rail grade crossings; and 
improving research efforts to enhance and promote railroad 
safety and performance. The strategy and annual plans must 
include estimates of the funds and staff resources needed to 
accomplish each activity, and be submitted to Congress at the 
same time as the President's budget submission.
    Subsection (d) requires the Secretary and the Administrator 
of the Federal Railroad Safety Administration, no less 
frequently than semiannually, to assess the progress of the 
Administration toward achieving each of the strategic goals 
described above. An annual report must be submitted to Congress 
on the performance of the Federal Railroad Safety 
Administration relative to the goals of the railroad safety 
strategy and annual plans.

Section 103. Reports

    This section requires the Inspector General of the 
Department of Transportation to submit to the Secretary of 
Transportation and the Administrator of the Federal Railroad 
Safety Administration, within 30 days of the date of enactment, 
a report containing a list of each statutory mandate regarding 
railroad safety that has not been implemented and a list of 
each open safety recommendation made by the National 
Transportation Safety Board or the Inspector General regarding 
railroad safety.
    Subsection (b)(1) requires the Secretary, not later than 90 
days after the date of enactment, and every 180 days thereafter 
until each of the mandates has been implemented, to transmit to 
Congress a report on the specific actions taken to implement 
such mandates.
    Subsection (b)(2) requires the Secretary, not later than 
January 1 of each year, to transmit to the Committee on 
Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of 
Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and 
Transportation of the Senate a report containing each open 
safety recommendation made by the National Transportation 
Safety Board or the Inspector General regarding railroad 
safety, a copy of the Department of Transportation's response 
to each of the recommendations, and a progress report on 
implementing such recommendations.

Section 104. Rulemaking process

    This section prohibits the Secretary from issuing a rule or 
order that incorporates by reference a code, rule, standard, 
requirement, or practice issued by an association or other 
entity that is not an agency of the Federal Government, unless 
that reference is to a particular code, rule, standard, 
requirement, or practice adopted before the date on which the 
rule is issued by the Secretary, and unless the date on which 
the code, rule, standard, requirement, or practices was adopted 
is specifically cited in the rule.

Section 105. Authorization of appropriations

    This section amends section 20117 of title 49, United 
States Code, to authorize to be appropriated a total of $1.12 
billion for fiscal years 2008 through 2011 to the Secretary to 
carry out his or her rail safety responsibilities. With amounts 
appropriated, the Secretary is directed to purchase six Gage 
Restraint Measurement System vehicles and five track geometry 
vehicles to enable the deployment of one Gage Restraint 
Measurement System vehicle and one track geometry vehicle in 
each region. In addition, $18 million is authorized to be 
appropriated to the Secretary to design, develop, and construct 
the Facility for Underground Rail Station and Tunnel at the 
Transportation Technology Center in Pueblo, Colorado. The 
facility shall be used to test and evaluate the vulnerabilities 
of above-ground and underground rail tunnels to prevent 
accidents and incidents in such tunnels, to mitigate and 
remediate the consequences of any such accidents or incidents, 
and to provide a realistic training scenario for training 
emergency responders. Funding is also authorized to be 
appropriated to the Secretary for rail security personnel in 
regional offices and in Washington, DC.

                       Title II. Employee Fatigue


Section 201. Hours-of-service reform

    The Committee has received testimony on the importance of 
strengthening hours-of-service standards for railroad workers 
and mitigating fatigue. The Committee has also received 
testimony on the importance of eliminating limbo time.
    The NTSB, following a recent investigation of a train 
accident in Macdona, Texas, recommended that the FRA limit 
train crewmember limbo time to address fatigue. The NTSB 
investigation found that in June 2004, the month of the 
accident, ``the Union Pacific engineer worked at least part of 
22 days and that his time on duty ranged from nine hours to 
more than 18 hours. Eleven of his work days were longer than 14 
hours, with one day totaling 22 hours (12 hours on-duty and 10 
hours of limbo time).''
    According to the accident report, the NTSB was concerned 
that, ``because minimum rest periods prescribed under the hours 
of service regulations do not take limbo time into account, 
such time could have cumulative detrimental effects on 
crewmember fatigue.''
    The NTSB concluded that limbo time, which is limited 
neither by Federal regulation nor railroad operating rules, 
could be a factor in crewmember fatigue in that required rest 
periods do not take into account the extended hours of 
wakefulness before the rest period begins. The NTSB stated: 
``The combination of erratic work schedules and excess limbo 
time would be expected to have a detrimental impact on 
crewmember fatigue * * *.''
    This section seeks to strengthen the hours-of-service 
standards for signal and train employees by providing them with 
at least 10 consecutive hours of undisturbed rest during a 
period of 24 hours; prohibiting them from working in excess of 
12 consecutive hours; and requiring railroad carriers and 
railroad contractors to provide such employees with at least 
one period of at least 24 consecutive hours off duty in a 
period of seven consecutive days. The Secretary is authorized 
to waive this last requirement if a collective bargaining 
agreement provides a different arrangement and such arrangement 
provides an equivalent level of safety.
    Subsection (a) extends hours-of-service standards to 
railroad contractors who are engaged in installing, repairing, 
or maintaining signal systems.
    Subsection (b) clarifies that up to one hour of time spent 
returning from a final trouble call of a period of continuous 
or broken service is time off duty, and limits the number of 
days a signal employee can exceed the 12-hour limit on hours of 
service for emergencies to no more than three days during a 
period of seven consecutive days. This standard is consistent 
with dispatcher limits. The subsection further prohibits signal 
employees from exceeding the 12-hour limit on hours of service 
to conduct routine repairs, routine maintenance, or routine 
inspection of signal systems. A signal employee is only 
permitted to exceed the hours-of-service limits for no more 
than four additional hours in a period of 24 consecutive hours 
when a true emergency exists and the work of that employee is 
related to the emergency. The subsection also provides that the 
hours of service, duty hours, and rest periods of signal 
employees shall be governed exclusively by Chapter 201. Signal 
employees operating motor vehicles shall not be subject to any 
hours-of-service rules, duty hours, or rest period rules 
promulgated by any Federal authority, including the Federal 
Motor Carrier Safety Administration, other than the Federal 
Railroad Safety Administration.
    Subsection (c) eliminates limbo time by providing that all 
time spent in deadhead transportation to a duty assignment, all 
time spent waiting for deadhead transportation, and all time 
spent in deadhead transportation from a duty assignment to a 
place of final release is time on duty, with some exceptions. 
The subsection allows limbo time in situations involving delays 
in the operations of a railroad carrier, when the delays were 
caused by a casualty, an accident, a track obstruction, an act 
of God, a weather event causing a delay, a snowstorm, a 
landslide, a track or bridge washout, a derailment, a major 
equipment failure which prevents a train from advancing, or 
other delay from a cause unknown or unforeseeable to a railroad 
carrier and its officers and agents in charge of the employee 
when the employee left a designated terminal. In addition to 
these exceptions, the subsection allows the carriers to use up 
to 40 hours a month in limbo time per employee during the first 
authorization year; 30 hours a month during the second 
authorization year; and 10 hours a month thereafter. The 
subsection also requires reporting of railroad use of limbo 
time which results in total work time of more than 12 hours and 
requires additional rest equal to all time in limbo in excess 
of 12 hours.

Section 202. Employee sleeping quarters

    This section amends Section 21106 of title 49, United 
States Code, to prohibit railroad carriers from providing 
sleeping quarters through the use of camp cars, as defined in 
Appendix C to part 228 of title 49 of the Code of Federal 
Regulations, for employees and any individuals employed to 
maintain the right-of-way of a railroad carrier. This 
prohibition is effective 12 months after the date of enactment.

Section 203. Fatigue management plans

    This section requires all railroads to submit to the 
Secretary for review and approval a fatigue management plan 
that is designed to reduce the fatigue experienced by railroad 
employees and to reduce the likelihood of accidents and 
injuries caused by fatigue.

Section 204. Regulatory authority

    This section authorizes the Secretary of Transportation to 
issue regulations to reduce the maximum hours an employee may 
be required or allowed to go or remain on duty to a level less 
than the level established under Chapter 201 of title 49, 
United States Code, or to increase the minimum hours an 
employee may be required or allowed to rest to a level greater 
than the level established under that chapter. The regulations 
must be based on scientific and medical research.

Section 205. Conforming amendment

    This section amends section 21303 of title 49, United 
States Code, to clarify that a railroad carrier is deemed to 
know the acts of its managers, supervisors, officers, and 
agents in any proceeding dealing with a violation of Chapter 
211.

            Title III. Protection of Employees and Witnesses


Section 301. Employee protections

    This section amends section 20109 of title 49, United 
States Code, to strengthen existing whistleblower protections 
for railroad workers. It replaces the existing process for 
filing a petition for relief with the National Mediation Board 
with a process for filing such petitions with the Secretary of 
Labor, which is consistent with the whistleblower process for 
other transportation workers, including aviation personnel and 
drivers of commercial motor vehicles. The section provides that 
if the Secretary of Labor has not issued a final decision 
within 180 days after the filing of the complaint, the employee 
may bring an original action at law or equity for de novo 
review in the appropriate district court of the United States. 
An employee prevailing in any action under this section shall 
be entitled to all relief necessary to make the covered 
individual whole, which shall include reinstatement with the 
same seniority status that the covered individual would have 
had, but for the discrimination; the amount of any back pay, 
with interest; and compensation for any special damages 
sustained as a result of the discrimination, including 
litigation costs, expert witness fees, and reasonable attorney 
fees. Relief may also include punitive damages in an amount not 
to exceed ten times the amount of any compensatory damages 
awarded.

                       Title IV. Grade Crossings


Section 401. Toll-free number to report grade crossing problems

    This section amends section 20152 of title 49, United 
States Code, to require the Secretary of Transportation, within 
18 months of the date of enactment, to require each railroad 
carrier to establish and maintain a toll-free telephone service 
for rights-of-way over which it dispatches trains for the 
purpose of receiving calls reporting malfunctions of signals, 
crossing gates, and other devices and disabled vehicles 
blocking railroad tracks at grade crossings. Upon receiving a 
report, the railroad carrier is required to immediately contact 
trains operating near the grade crossing to warn the crews of 
the malfunction or disabled vehicle and then contact, as 
necessary, appropriate public safety officials having 
jurisdiction over the grade crossing to provide them with the 
information necessary for them to direct traffic, assist in the 
removal of the disabled vehicle, or carry out other activities 
appropriate to responding to the hazardous circumstance. The 
toll-free telephone number, an explanation of the purpose of 
the number, and the grade crossing number assigned to the 
particular crossing must be placed on signs at each grade 
crossing and be visible to the public.

Section 402. Roadway user sight distance at highway-rail grade 
        crossings

    This section adds section 20156 to title 49, United States 
Code. Subsection (a) of section 20156 requires the Secretary to 
prescribe regulations that require each railroad carrier to 
remove from its rights-of-way at all public highway-rail grade 
crossings, and at all private highway-rail grade crossings open 
to unrestricted public access, grass, brush, shrubbery, trees, 
and other vegetation which may obstruct the view of a 
pedestrian or a vehicle operator, and to maintain its rights-
of-way at all such crossings free of such vegetation.
    Subsection (b) of section 20156 allows the Secretary to 
make allowances for preserving trees and other ornamental or 
protective growth where State or local law or policy would 
otherwise protect the vegetation from removal and where the 
roadway authority or private-crossing holder takes appropriate 
temporary or permanent action to abate the hazard to roadway 
users.
    Subsection (c) of section 20156 authorizes States to 
continue in force, or enact, a law, regulation, or order 
requiring the removal of obstructive vegetation from a railroad 
right-of-way for safety reasons that is more stringent than the 
requirements of the regulations prescribed by the Secretary.
    Subsection (d) of section 20156 requires the Secretary to 
develop and make available to States model legislation that 
addresses sight obstructions at grade crossings that are 
equipped solely with passive warnings, such as permanent 
structures, temporary structures, and standing railroad 
equipment, as recommended by the Inspector General of the 
Department of Transportation in Report No. MH-2007-044.

Section 403. Grade crossing signal violations

    This section amends section 20151 of title 49, United 
States Code, to require the Secretary to develop and make 
available to States model legislation providing for civil or 
criminal penalties, or both, for violations of grade crossing 
signals.

Section 404. National crossing inventory

    This section adds section 20157 to title 49, United States 
Code. Section 20157 requires railroad carriers and States to 
provide information to the Secretary about grade crossings, and 
to update that information on a periodic basis beginning not 
later than three years after the date of enactment. The section 
also authorizes the Secretary to impose civil penalties for 
violations of this section.

Section 405. Accident and incident reporting

    This section directs the Federal Railroad Safety 
Administration to conduct an audit of each Class I railroad at 
least once every two years and conduct an audit of each non-
Class I railroad at least once every five years to ensure that 
all grade crossing collisions, fatalities, and injuries are 
reported to the national accident database, as recommended by 
the Department of Transportation's Inspector General.

Section 406. Authority to buy promotional items to improve railroad 
        crossing safety and prevent railroad trespass

    This section amends section 20134(a) of title 49, United 
States Code, to authorize the Secretary to purchase promotional 
items of nominal value and distribute them to the public 
without charge as part of an educational or awareness program 
to improve the safety of grade crossings and to prevent 
trespass on railroad rights-of-way. The Secretary is directed 
to prescribe guidelines for the administration of this 
authority.

Section 407. Operation Lifesaver

    This section authorizes appropriations to the Federal 
Railroad Safety Administration to make grants to Operation 
Lifesaver to carry out a public information and education 
program to help prevent railroad incidents, injuries, and 
fatalities, and to improve awareness along railroad rights-of-
way and at grade crossings, and to implement a pilot program, 
to be known as the Railroad Safety Public Awareness Program, 
that addresses the need for targeted, sustained community 
outreach on rail and grade crossing safety. The section 
authorizes $1.5 million for each of fiscal years 2008 through 
2011 to carry out this section.

Section 408. State action plan

    This section requires the Secretary to identify on an 
annual basis the top 10 States that have had the most grade 
crossing collisions over the past year, and to work with each 
of those States to develop a State Grade Crossing Action Plan 
that identifies specific solutions for improving safety at 
crossings.

Section 409. Fostering introduction of new technology to improve safety 
        at highway-rail grade crossings

    The installation of grade-crossing warning signals and 
cross-arms often costs in excess of $100,000 using current 
technology. This section adds section 20165 to title 49, United 
States Code. Section 20165 encourages the development of new 
technology that can prevent loss of life and injuries at grade 
crossings.

                          Title V. Enforcement


Section 501. Enforcement

    This section amends section 20112 of title 49, United 
States Code, to clarify that the Attorney General may bring a 
civil action in a district court of the United States to: (1) 
enjoin a violation of, or to enforce, this part or a railroad 
safety regulation prescribed or order issued by the Secretary; 
(2) collect a civil penalty imposed or an amount agreed on in 
compromise under section 21301 (general railroad safety 
violations), section 21302 (accidents and incident violations), 
or section 21303 (hours-of-service violations) of this title; 
and (3) to enforce a subpoena, request for admissions, request 
for production of documents or other tangible things, or 
request for testimony by deposition.

Section 502. Civil penalties

    This section amends sections 21301, 21302, and 21303 of 
title 49, United States Code, to increase the maximum civil 
penalty for a general railroad safety violation, accident and 
incident violation, and hours-of-service violation from $10,000 
to $25,000. The minimum civil penalty remains $500. However, 
when a grossly negligent violation or a pattern of repeated 
violations has caused an imminent hazard of death or injury to 
individuals, or has caused death or injury, the maximum civil 
penalty is increased from $20,000 under current law to not more 
than $100,000.

Section 503. Criminal penalties

    This section amends section 21311 of title 49, United 
States Code, to increase the maximum penalty for failing to 
file an accident or incident report on time from $500 to 
$2,500, and the maximum penalty for each day after the due date 
from $500 to $2,500.

Section 504. Expansion of emergency order authority

    This section amends section 20104 of title 49, United 
States Code, to expand the authority of the Secretary to issue 
emergency rules or restrictions to events causing significant 
harm to the environment. Current law allows the Secretary to 
issue emergency rules or restrictions in the event of death or 
personal injury.

Section 505. Enforcement transparency

    This section adds section 20118 to title 49, United States 
Code, to require the Secretary, not later than December 31, 
2007, to provide a monthly updated summary to the public of all 
railroad enforcement actions taken by the Secretary of the 
Federal Railroad Safety Administration, from the time a notice 
commencing an enforcement action is issued until the 
enforcement action is final. In each summary, the Secretary 
must identify the railroad carrier or person named in the 
enforcement activity, the type of alleged violation, the 
penalty or penalties proposed, any changes in case status since 
the previous summary, the final assessment amount of each 
penalty, and the reasons for a reduction in the proposed 
penalty. The Secretary must provide a mechanism by which a 
railroad carrier or person named in an enforcement action may 
make information, explanations, or documents it believes are 
responsive to the enforcement action available to the public.

Section 506. Interfering with or hampering safety investigations

    This section adds section 21312 to title 49, United States 
Code, to make it unlawful for any person knowingly to interfere 
with, obstruct, or hamper an investigation by the Secretary of 
Transportation under section 20702 or section 20902 of title 
49, or a railroad investigation by the National Transportation 
Safety Board.

Section 507. Railroad radio monitoring authority

    This section allows the Secretary to authorize officers, 
employees, or agents of the Secretary to intercept and record 
radio communications, with or without the consent of the sender 
or other receivers of the communication, but only where such 
communication is broadcast or transmitted over a radio 
frequency which is authorized for use by one or more railroad 
carriers by the Federal Communications Commission and primarily 
used by such railroad carriers for communications in connection 
with railroad operations. Information obtained through such 
monitoring and recording would not be admissible into evidence 
in any administrative or judicial proceeding, with two 
exceptions. First, the provision would not bar admission into 
evidence of the intercepted communication in a judicial 
proceeding for the prosecution of a felony under Federal or 
State law. Second, the provision would not bar admission of the 
intercepted communication for impeachment purposes in seven 
enumerated types of railroad safety proceedings. In addition, 
information is not subject to publication or disclosure, or 
search or review in connection therewith, under section 552 of 
title 5, United States Code.

Section 508. Inspector staffing

    This section requires the Secretary to increase the total 
number of positions for railroad safety inspection and 
enforcement personnel at the Federal Railroad Safety 
Administration so that by December 31, 2008, the total number 
of such positions is at least 500, by December 31, 2009, the 
total number of such positions is at least 600, by December 31, 
2010, the total number of such positions is at least 700, and 
by December 31, 2011, the total number of positions is at least 
800. There are currently 421 Federal rail safety inspectors.

                   Title VI. Miscellaneous Provisions


Section 601. Positive train control systems

    The Committee has received testimony on the importance of 
implementing positive train control. According to the FRA, 40 
percent of all train accidents are the result of human factors. 
According to the NTSB, technological solutions, such as 
positive train control, have great potential to reduce the 
number of serious train accidents by providing safety redundant 
systems to protect against such human performance failures. 
Positive train control has been on the NTSB's list of most 
wanted safety improvements for 17 years.
    In the past 10 years alone, the NTSB has investigated 52 
rail accidents, including four transit accidents, where the 
installation of a positive train control system would likely 
have prevented the accident. These include five serious 
accidents in 2005: Graniteville, South Carolina; Anding, 
Mississippi; Shepherd, Texas; Chicago, Illinois; and Texarkana, 
Arkansas. These figures, however, do not include the numerous 
accidents that the FRA has investigated, and which could have 
been prevented, if positive train control was implemented. In 
August 1999, the Railroad Safety Advisory Committee published a 
report entitled Implementation of Positive Train Control 
Systems. The report states that out of a select group of 6,400 
accidents that occurred from 1998 through 1997, 2,659 of those 
accidents could have been prevented had some form of positive 
train control been implemented.
    This section requires each Class I railroad, within 12 
months of the date of enactment, to develop and submit to the 
Secretary for review and approval a plan for implementing a 
positive train control system by December 31, 2014. Such 
systems must provide a safety redundancy to minimize the risk 
of accidents by overriding human performance failures involving 
train movements on main line tracks.
    Subsection (c) requires the Secretary to require each 
railroad carrier to include in its plan, at a minimum, 
measurable goals, including a strategy and timeline for 
implementation of such systems; a prioritization of how the 
systems will be implemented, with particular emphasis on high-
risk corridors such as those that have significant movements of 
hazardous materials or where commuter and intercity passenger 
railroads operate; identification of detailed steps the 
carriers will take to implement the systems; and any other 
elements the Secretary considers appropriate.
    Subsection (d) requires the Secretary to review and approve 
the plan not later than 90 days after the Secretary receives 
it. If the proposed plan is not approved, the Secretary must 
notify the affected railroad carrier as to the specific points 
in which the proposed plan is deficient, and the railroad 
carrier must correct all deficiencies within 30 days following 
receipt of the written notice from the Secretary.
    Subsection (e) requires the Secretary to submit a report to 
Congress no later than December 31, 2011, on the progress of 
the railroads in implementing the systems.
    Subsection (f) authorizes the Secretary to extend the date 
for implementation for any Class I railroad carrier for a 
period of not more than 24 months if the Secretary determines 
such an extension is necessary to implement a more effective 
positive train control system than would be possible by 
December 31, 2014; to obtain interoperability between positive 
train control systems implemented by railroad carriers; and for 
the Secretary to determine that a positive train control system 
meets the requirements of this section and regulations issued 
by the Secretary; or to otherwise enhance safety. Not later 
than 30 days after the Secretary grants an extension, the 
Secretary shall publish a notice in the Federal Register that 
identifies the Class I railroad carrier that is being granted 
the extension, the reasons for granting the extension, and the 
length of the extension.
    Subsection (g) prohibits the Secretary from permitting the 
installation of any positive train control system or component 
unless the Secretary has first certified that such system or 
component has not experienced a safety-critical failure during 
prior testing and evaluation. If such a failure has occurred, 
the system or component may be repaired and evaluated in 
accordance with part 236 of title 49 of the Code of Federal 
Regulations and may be installed when the Secretary certifies 
that the factors causing the failure have been corrected and 
approves the system for installation in accordance with part 
236.

Section 602. Warning in nonsignaled territory

    The Committee has received testimony on the importance of 
preventing accidents due to misaligned switches. According to 
the FRA, misaligned switches are consistently either the 
leading or second leading cause of all human factor accidents. 
The NTSB has investigated several accidents which resulted from 
misaligned switches dating back to their investigation of an 
accident in Cotula, Texas, in 1974. More recently, the NTSB 
investigated the 2005 accidents in Graniteville, South 
Carolina, and Shepherd, Texas, which were also caused by 
misaligned switches.
    With respect to the Graniteville accident, a Norfolk 
Southern train, while traveling 47 mph, encountered an 
improperly positioned switch that diverted the train from the 
main line onto an industry track, where it struck an unoccupied 
parked train. The track through Graniteville was nonsignaled 
(``dark'') territory. Nine people died as a result of chlorine 
gas inhalation after a tank car was punctured during the 
accident. The NTSB investigation found that the improperly 
lined switch had most recently been used by the crew of a local 
train about eight hours before the accident. The crew had lined 
the switch for an industry track in order to place two cars at 
a local plant and then park their train. No crewmember 
remembered relining the switch for the main line before they 
boarded a taxi and returned to the terminal. The NTSB 
concluded, among other things, that the switch was not visible 
to the crew as they worked, leaving them without a visual 
reminder to reline the switch. Further, the crew of the 
oncoming train could not see that the switch was misaligned in 
time to stop the train.
    With respect to the Shepherd accident, a Union Pacific 
train entered a siding in Shepherd, Texas, at approximately 37 
mph and struck a parked train, killing one crewmember. There 
were no wayside signals to govern the train movements or 
protect the train from an interruption in the continuity of the 
track, such as an open switch. Consequently, strict compliance 
with the operating rules was necessary to protect one train 
from another. The probable cause of this accident was the 
failure of a previous crew to return a main track switch to the 
normal position after they had secured the train on the siding 
and departed the area.
    In response to these accidents and similar accidents dating 
back to 1974, the NTSB has repeatedly issued recommendations to 
the FRA to require installation of technologies that will 
capture the attention of train crews and prevent misaligned 
switches. The Committee is aware that there are various forms 
of such technologies.
    This section adds section 20158 to title 49, United States 
Code. Section 20158 requires the Secretary of Transportation, 
within 12 months of the date of enactment, to prescribe 
regulations that require railroads, with respect to main lines 
in nonsignaled territory, to either install an automatically 
activated device, in addition to the switch banner, that will, 
visually or electronically, compellingly capture the attention 
of the employees involved with switch operations and clearly 
convey the status of the switch both in daylight and darkness 
or operate trains at speeds that will allow them to be safely 
stopped in advance of misaligned switches.
    The Committee intends that a railroad carrier would not 
have to install such automatically activated devices along main 
lines in nonsignaled territory if the railroad carrier has 
installed a train speed enforcement system that would stop a 
train in advance of a misaligned switch in such areas or the 
railroad carrier operators trains at speeds that will allow 
them to be safely stopped in advance of such switches.

Section 603. Track safety

    The Committee has received testimony on the importance of 
strengthening track safety standards. In 2006, track-related 
accidents surpassed human factors-related accidents as the 
leading cause of all train accidents.
    This section adds section 20159 to title 49, United States 
Code. Section 20159 requires the Secretary, within 12 months of 
the date of enactment, to prescribe regulations to require 
railroad carriers to manage the rail in their tracks so as to 
minimize accidents due to internal rail flaws. The regulations 
must, at a minimum, require railroad carriers to conduct 
ultrasonic or other appropriate inspections to ensure that rail 
used to replace defective segments of existing rail is free 
from internal defects; require railroad carriers to perform 
rail integrity inspections to manage an annual service failure 
rate of less than 0.1 per track mile on high-risk corridors, 
such as those that have significant movements of hazardous 
materials or where commuter and intercity passenger railroads 
operate; and encourage railroad use of advanced rail defect 
inspection equipment and similar technologies as part of a 
comprehensive rail inspection program. This section also 
requires the Secretary, within 18 months of the date of 
enactment, to develop and implement regulations for all classes 
of track for concrete rail ties that address, at a minimum, 
limits for rail seat abrasion; concrete crosstie pad wear 
limits; missing or broken rail fasteners; loss of appropriate 
toeload pressure; improper fastener configurations; and 
excessive lateral rail movement.

Section 604. Certification of conductors

    This section adds section 20160 to title 49, United States 
Code. Section 20160 requires the Secretary, within 18 months of 
the date of enactment, to prescribe regulations and issue 
orders to establish a program requiring the certification of 
train conductors. In prescribing such regulations, the 
Secretary must require that conductors on passenger trains be 
trained in security, first aid, and emergency preparedness.

Section 605. Minimum training standards

    This section adds section 20161 to title 49, United States 
Code. Section 20161 requires the Secretary, within 180 days of 
enactment, to establish minimum training standards for each 
class and craft of railroad employees and develop a minimum 
training curriculum, and ongoing training criteria, testing, 
and skills evaluation measures to ensure that railroad 
employees charged with the inspection of track or railroad 
equipment are qualified to assess railroad compliance with 
Federal standards to identify defective conditions and 
initiative immediate remedial action to correct critical safety 
defects that are known to contribute to derailments, accidents, 
or injury. The section also requires railroad carriers to 
submit their training and qualification programs to the Federal 
Railroad Safety Administration for review and approval.

Section 606. Prompt medical attention

    This section adds section 20162 to title 49, United States 
Code. Section 20162 prohibits a railroad carrier from denying, 
delaying, or interfering with the medical or first aid 
treatment of an employee who is injured during the course of 
employment. If transportation to a hospital is requested by an 
employee who is injured during the course of employment, the 
railroad must promptly arrange to have the injured employee 
transported to the nearest medically appropriate hospital. This 
section further prohibits a railroad carrier from disciplining, 
or threatening to discipline, an employee for requesting 
medical or first aid treatment, or for following orders or a 
treatment plan of a treating physician. For purposes of this 
section, ``discipline'' means to bring charges against a person 
in a disciplinary proceeding, suspend, terminate, place on 
probation, or make note of reprimand on an employee's record.

Section 607. Emergency escape breathing apparatus

    This section adds section 20163 to title 49, United States 
Code. Section 20163 requires the Secretary, within 18 months of 
enactment, to prescribe regulations that require the railroads 
to provide emergency breathing apparatus for all crewmembers on 
freight trains carrying hazardous materials that would pose an 
inhalation hazard in the event of unintentional release and to 
provide such crewmembers with appropriate training for using 
the breathing apparatus.

Section 608. Locomotive cab environment

    This section requires the Secretary, within 12 months of 
the date of enactment, to transmit a report to Congress on the 
effects of the locomotive cab environment on the safety, 
health, and performance of train crews.

Section 609. Tunnel information

    This section requires each railroad carrier, with respect 
to each of its tunnels which are longer than 1,000 feet and 
located under a city with a population of 400,000 or greater or 
carry five or more scheduled passenger trains per day, or 500 
or more carloads of Toxic Inhalation Hazardous materials per 
year, to maintain for at least two years historical 
documentation of structural inspection and maintenance 
activities for such tunnels, including information on the 
methods of ingress and egress into and out of the tunnels, the 
types of cargos typically transported through the tunnels, and 
schematics or blueprints for the tunnels, when available. Upon 
request, railroad carriers are also required to provide 
periodic briefings to the government of the local jurisdictions 
in which the tunnels are located, including updates whenever a 
repair or rehabilitation project substantially alters the 
methods of ingress and egress. Such governments are required to 
use appropriate means to protect and restrict the distribution 
of any security sensitive information provided by the railroad 
carriers, consistent with national security interests.

Section 610. Railroad police

    This section amends section 28101 of title 49, United 
States Code, to authorize rail police officers who are employed 
by a railroad carrier and certified or commissioned as police 
officers under the laws of a State to enforce the laws of any 
jurisdiction in which any rail carrier owns property, to the 
extent of the authority of such police officers to protect 
employees, passengers, or patrons of any rail carrier; 
property, equipment, and facilities owned, leased, operated, or 
maintained by any rail carrier; property moving in interstate 
or foreign commerce in the possession of any rail carrier; and 
personnel, equipment, and material moving by rail that are 
vital to the national defense.

Section 611. Museum locomotive study

    This section requires the Secretary of Transportation to 
conduct a study of its regulations relating to safety 
inspections of diesel-electric locomotives and equipment and 
the safety consequences of requiring less frequent inspections 
of such locomotives which are operated by museums. The study 
must also include an analysis of the safety consequences of 
requiring less air brake inspections of such locomotives. The 
Secretary is required to transmit a report to Congress on the 
results of the study within 12 months of the date of enactment.

Section 612. Certification of carmen

    This section adds section 20164 to title 49, United States 
Code. Section 20164 requires the Secretary, within 18 months of 
the date of enactment, to prescribe regulations and issue 
orders to establish a program requiring the certification of 
carmen, including all employees performing mechanical 
inspections, brake system inspections, or maintenance on 
freight and passenger rail cars. The program shall be designed 
based on the requirements of parts 215, 221, 231, 232, and 238 
of title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations.

Section 613. Train control systems deployment grants

    This section requires the Secretary to establish a grant 
program for the deployment of train control and component 
technologies. Grants shall be made to eligible passenger and 
freight railroad carriers and State and local governments for 
specified projects that have public benefits of improved safety 
or network efficiency. Applicants for grants are required to 
file with the Secretary a train control implementation plan 
that describes the overall safety and efficiency benefits of 
installing the systems and the stages for implementing such 
systems. The Secretary is required to give priority 
consideration to applications that benefit both passenger and 
freight safety and efficiency, or incentivize train control 
technology deployment on high-risk corridors such as those that 
have significant movements of hazardous materials or where 
commuter and intercity passenger railroads operate.

Section 614. Infrastructure safety investment reports

    This section requires each Class I railroad, not later than 
February 15 of each year, to file a report with the Federal 
Railroad Safety Administration and the Surface Transportation 
Board detailing, by State, the infrastructure investments and 
maintenance they have performed on their system, including but 
not limited to track, locomotives, railcars, and grade 
crossings, in the previous calendar year. Such reports shall be 
made publicly available, and any interested party may file 
comments about the reports, which also shall be made public.

Section 615. Emergency grade crossing safety improvements

    On Easter 2007, three teenage girls died when their car was 
struck by a freight train at a railroad grade crossing in 
Excelsior Springs, Missouri. The crossing was equipped with 
flashing warning signal lights, but no crossing gates.
    This section requires the Secretary to establish a grant 
program for State and local governments to provide emergency 
grade crossing safety improvements at locations where there has 
been a railroad grade crossing collision with a school bus or 
collision involving three or more serious bodily injuries or 
fatalities. Grants awarded shall not exceed $250,000 per 
crossing.

Section 616. Clarifications regarding State law causes of action

    This section amends section 20106 of title 49, United 
States Code, to clarify that nothing in that section shall be 
construed to preempt an action under State law seeking damages 
for personal injury, death, or property damage alleging that a 
party has violated the Federal standard of care established by 
a regulation or order issued by the Secretary of Transportation 
(with respect to railroad safety matters) or the Secretary of 
Homeland Security (with respect to railroad security matters) 
covering the same subject matter as provided in section 
20106(a). This includes actions under State law for a party's 
violation of or failure to adequately comply with its own plan, 
rule, or standard that it created pursuant to a regulation or 
order issued by either of the Secretaries or for a party's 
failure to adequately comply with a law, regulation, or order 
issued by either of the Secretaries. Actions under State law 
for a violation of a State law, regulation, or order that is 
not inconsistent with section 20106(a)(2) are also not 
preempted. Section 20106(b)(2), as amended by this section, 
clarifies that this entire section shall apply to all pending 
State law causes of action arising from events or activities 
occurring on or after January 18, 2002.
    After the Committee ordered H.R. 2095 reported favorably to 
the House on June 14, 2007, the House and Senate passed the 
Conference Report on H.R. 1, the ``Implementing Recommendations 
of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007'', which addressed this 
issue and clarified the intent and interpretations of the 
preemption statute under current law. The President signed the 
bill on August 3, 2007 (P.L. 110-259).
    P.L. 110-259 clarifies that section 20106 of title 49, 
United States Code, does not preempt State law causes of action 
where a party has failed to comply with the Federal standard of 
care established by a regulation or order issued by the 
Secretary of Transportation or the Secretary of Homeland 
Security, its own plan or standard that it created pursuant to 
a regulation or order issued by either of the Secretaries, or a 
State law, regulation, or order that is not incompatible with 
section 20106(a)(2). P.L. 110-259 also clarifies that section 
20106 applies to all pending State law causes of action arising 
from activities or events occurring on or after January 18, 
2002, the date of the Minot, North Dakota derailment. The 
provision also states that nothing in section 20106 creates a 
Federal cause of action on behalf of an injured party or 
confers Federal question jurisdiction for such State law causes 
of action.

          Title VII. Rail Passenger Disaster Family Assistance


Section 701. Short title

    This section designates the title of Title VII as the 
``Rail Passenger Disaster Family Assistance Act of 2007''.

Section 702. Assistance by National Transportation Safety Board to 
        families of passengers involved in rail passenger accidents

    This section adds section 1139 to title 49, United States 
Code. Section 1139 requires the Chairman of the National 
Transportation Safety Board, as soon as practical after being 
notified of a rail passenger accident within the United States, 
to (1) designate and publicize the name and phone number of a 
director of family support services who shall be an employee of 
the Board and shall be responsible for acting as a point of 
contact within the Federal Government for the families of 
passengers involved in the accident and a liaison between the 
rail passenger carrier and the families; and (2) designate an 
independent nonprofit organization, with experience in 
disasters and posttrauma communication with families, which 
shall have primary responsibility for coordinating the 
emotional care and support of the families passengers involved 
in the accident.

Section 703. Rail passenger carrier plans to address needs of families 
        of passengers involved in rail passenger accidents

    This section adds section 25101 to title 49, United States 
Code. Section 25101 requires each rail passenger carrier, 
within six months of the date of enactment, to submit to the 
Secretary and the Chairman of the National Transportation 
Safety Board a plan for addressing the needs of the families of 
passengers involved in any rail passenger accident involving a 
train of the rail passenger carrier and resulting in a major 
loss of life. The section further provides that a rail 
passenger carrier shall not be liable for any damages in any 
action brought in a Federal or State court arising out of the 
performance of the rail passenger carrier in preparing or 
providing a passenger list, or in providing information 
concerning a train reservation, pursuant to a plan submitted by 
the rail passenger carrier, unless such liability was caused by 
conduct of the rail passenger carrier which was grossly 
negligent or which constituted intentional misconduct.

Section 704. Establishment of task force

    This section requires the Secretary to establish a task 
force to develop a model plan to assist passenger rail carriers 
in responding to passenger rail accidents; recommendations on 
methods to improve the timeliness of the notification provided 
by passenger rail carriers to the families of passengers 
involved in a passenger rail accident; recommendations on 
methods to ensure that the families of passengers involved in a 
passenger rail accident who are not citizens of the United 
States receive appropriate assistance; and recommendations on 
methods to ensure that emergency services personnel have as 
immediate and accurate a count of the number of passengers on 
board the train as possible. The Secretary is required to 
transmit to Congress a report containing the model plan and 
recommendations developed by the task force not later than one 
year after the date of enactment.

            Legislative History and Committee Consideration

    The Federal Railroad Administration was last reauthorized 
by Congress in 1994, in the Federal Railroad Safety 
Authorization Act of 1994. That authorization expired in 1998. 
Since 1994, the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure 
has held 22 hearings on rail safety.
    In the 110th Congress, the Subcommittee on Railroads, 
Pipelines, and Hazardous Materials has held six hearings on 
rail safety. On January 30 and 31, 2007, the Subcommittee held 
hearings on reauthorization of the Federal rail safety program. 
On February 13, 2007, the Subcommittee held a hearing on 
fatigue. On March 16, 2007, the Subcommittee held a field 
hearing on the role of human factors in rail accidents. On May 
1, 2007, Chairman Oberstar introduced H.R. 2095, the ``Federal 
Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007''. On May 8, 2007, the 
Subcommittee held a hearing on rail safety legislation, 
including H.R. 2095. On August 8, 2007, the Subcommittee held a 
field hearing on Federal, State, and local roles in rail 
safety.
    On May 22, 2007, the Subcommittee on Railroads, Pipelines, 
and Hazardous Materials met in open session to consider H.R. 
2095. The Subcommittee adopted, by voice vote, the following 
amendments:
          An Amendment in the Nature of a Substitute to 
        require the Secretary to base efforts to strengthen 
        hours-of-service standards on scientific and medical 
        research; to allow the Secretary to extend the December 
        31, 2014 deadline for implementation of positive train 
        control systems for any railroad carrier for up to 24 
        additional months if the Secretary determines that such 
        an extension is necessary to implement a more effective 
        positive train control system, to obtain 
        interoperability between positive train control systems 
        implemented by railroad carriers, to determine that a 
        positive train control system meets existing 
        regulations, or to otherwise enhance safety; to limit 
        requirements that railroad carriers perform rail 
        integrity inspections to manage an annual service 
        failure rate of less than 0.1 per track mile to high-
        risk corridors, such as those that have significant 
        movements of hazardous materials or where commuter and 
        intercity passenger railroads operate; and to require 
        railroads to transport workers who are injured on-the-
        job to the nearest hospital. The amendment also 
        provided that time waiting for deadhead transportation 
        and time in deadhead transportation from a duty 
        assignment to the place of final release is neither 
        time on-duty nor time off-duty in situations involving 
        any of the following: a casualty, an accident, an act 
        of God, including a weather event such as a snowstorm, 
        landslide, or track or bridge washout, a track 
        obstruction, a derailment, a major equipment failure, 
        or any other delay that was unforeseen or unknown to 
        the railroad carrier when the employee left a terminal. 
        The amendment requires railroads to report to the 
        Federal Railroad Safety Administration on their usage 
        of limbo time in these situations, and they are 
        required to provide train crews in ``limbo'' with 
        additional time for rest equal to the time spent in 
        ``limbo'';
          An amendment to the Amendment in the Nature 
        of a Substitute to require the Secretary to develop and 
        make available to States model legislation addressing 
        sight obstructions at grade crossings;
          An amendment to the Amendment in the Nature 
        of a Substitute to limit the scope of fatigue 
        management plans submitted by railroad carriers to 
        employees performing safety sensitive functions;
          An amendment to the Amendment in the Nature 
        of a Substitute to authorize $1.5 million for Operation 
        Lifesaver to carry out a public information and 
        education program to help prevent incidents at grade 
        crossings and to use funds to implement a Railroad 
        Safety Public Awareness pilot program in States and 
        communities where safety is most at risk; and
          An amendment to the Amendment in the Nature 
        of a Substitute to require the Secretary of 
        Transportation to identify on an annual basis the top 
        10 States with the most grade crossing collisions and 
        to work with those States to develop a State Grade 
        Crossing Action Plan.
    The Subcommittee favorably recommended H.R. 2095, as 
amended, to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure 
by voice vote with a quorum present.
    On June 14, 2007, the Committee on Transportation and 
Infrastructure met in open session to consider H.R. 2095, as 
favorably recommended by the Subcommittee. The Committee 
adopted, by voice vote, a manager's amendment that made several 
changes to the bill. The manager's amendment allowed limbo time 
in circumstances of a casualty, an accident, a track 
obstruction, an act of God, a weather event causing a delay, a 
snowstorm, a landslide, a track or bridge washout, a 
derailment, a major equipment failure which prevents a train 
from advancing, or other delay from a cause unknown and 
unforeseeable to a railroad carrier when the employee left a 
designated terminal. In addition to these exceptions, the 
amendment allowed the carriers to use up to 40 hours a month in 
limbo time per employee during the first authorization year; 30 
hours a month during the second authorization year; and 10 
hours a month thereafter. The amendment also required the 
Secretary to certify that each positive train control system or 
component has not experienced a safety-critical failure during 
prior testing and evaluation. If such a failure has occurred, 
the system or component may be repaired and evaluated in 
accordance with existing regulations and may be installed when 
the Secretary certifies that the factors causing the failure 
have been corrected and approves the system for installation. 
The amendment further established a grant program for the 
deployment of train control and component technologies. The 
amendment made additional changes and technical corrections.
    The Committee ordered the bill, as amended by the 
Committee, reported favorably to the House by voice vote with a 
quorum present.

                              Record Votes

    Clause 3(b) of rule XIII of the House of Representatives 
requires each committee report to include the total number of 
votes cast for and against on each record vote on a motion to 
report and on any amendment offered to the measure or matter, 
and the names of those members voting for and against. On June 
14, 2007, the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure 
met in open session and adopted a manager's amendment to the 
bill by voice vote with a quorum present. The Committee ordered 
the bill, as amended, reported favorably to the House by voice 
vote with a quorum present.

                      Committee Oversight Findings

    With respect to the requirements of clause 3(c)(I) of rule 
XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives, the 
Committee's oversight findings and recommendations are 
reflected in this report.

                          Cost of Legislation

    Clause 3(c)(2) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives does not apply where a cost estimate and 
comparison prepared by the Director of the Congressional Budget 
Office under section 402 of the Congressional Budget Act of 
1974 has been timely submitted prior to the filing of the 
report and is included in the report. Such a cost estimate is 
included in this report.

                    Compliance with House Rule XIII

    1. With respect to the requirement of clause 3(c)(2) of 
rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives, and 
308(a) of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, the Committee 
references the report of the Congressional Budget Office 
included below.
    2. With respect to the requirement of clause 3(c)(4) of 
rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives, the 
performance goals and objectives of this legislation are to 
reauthorize the Federal Railroad Administration and establishes 
safety measures to prevent railroad fatalities, injuries, and 
hazardous materials releases.
    3. With respect to the requirement of clause 3(c)(3) of 
rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives and 
section 402 of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, the 
Committee has received the following cost estimate for H.R. 
2095 from the Director of the Congressional Budget Office:

                                     U.S. Congress,
                               Congressional Budget Office,
                                      Washington, DC, July 3, 2007.
Hon. James L. Oberstar,
Chairman, Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, House of 
        Representatives, Washington, DC.
    Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has 
prepared the enclosed cost estimate for H.R. 2095, the Federal 
Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contacts are Sarah Puro 
(for federal spending) and Emily Schlect (for revenues).
            Sincerely,
                                           Peter R. Orszag,
                                                          Director.
    Enclosure.

H.R. 2095--Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007

    Summary: H.R. 2095 would authorize appropriations over the 
2008-2011 period for operations of the Federal Railroad 
Administration (FRA) within the Department of Transportation 
(DOT) and would reorganize that agency and change its name to 
the Federal Rail Safety Administration (FRSA).
    CBO estimates that the bill would authorize the 
appropriation of $1.2 billion over the 2008-2012 period. Those 
amounts include funds for operating FRSA, building a rail 
facility in Pueblo, Colorado, grants to increase safety 
throughout the rail system, and implementing National 
Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) programs to assist the 
families of passengers who are in rail accidents. Under the 
bill, FRSA would promulgate and enforce rules and regulations, 
increase the number of track inspectors, administer grants for 
projects related to railroad safety, complete studies and 
reports regarding railroad safety and technology, and create 
model legislation for state and local governments related to 
the safety of areas where railroad tracks and highways meet 
(grade crossings). Assuming appropriation of the amounts 
authorized and estimated to be necessary, CBO estimates that 
implementing the bill would cost $176 million in 2008, $1.1 
billion over the 2008-2012 period, and about $80 million after 
2012.
    Enacting H.R. 2095 could increase direct spending, but CBO 
estimates that any increases in direct spending would be 
insignificant. CBO estimates that additional penalties of $6 
million a year, $30 million over the 2008-2012 period, and $60 
million over the 2008-2017 period would be collected under the 
bill. Penalty collections are classified as revenues in the 
budget.
    H.R. 2095 contains several intergovernmental and private-
sector mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act 
(UMRA). The bill's mandates include requirements for railroads 
to comply with hours of service restrictions, certification 
requirements, safety procedures, and reporting requirements, as 
well as preemptions of certain state laws. Due to the small 
number of public entities involved, CBO estimates that 
compliance costs for those entities would not exceed the annual 
threshold established in UMRA for intergovernmental mandates 
($66 million in 2007, adjusted annually for inflation). Because 
the costs to comply with the safety systems that would be 
required by the bill are substantial, CBO estimates that the 
aggregate cost to private entities of the mandates in the bill 
would exceed the annual threshold in UMRA for private-sector 
mandates ($131 million in 2007, adjusted annually for 
inflation).
    Other provisions of the bill would authorize grants for 
which state, local, and private-sector entities would be 
eligible. Any costs those entities might incur would result 
from participating in the grant programs and would be incurred 
voluntarily.
    Estimated cost to the Federal Government: The estimated 
budgetary impact of H.R. 2095 is shown in Table 1. The costs of 
this legislation fall within budget function 400 
(transportation).
    Basis of estimate: For this estimate, CBO assumes that H.R. 
2095 will be enacted near the end of fiscal year 2007, that the 
authorized and necessary amounts will be appropriated each 
year, and that outlays will follow the historical rate of 
spending for similar programs.

Spending subject to appropriation

    H.R. 2095 would reauthorize the programs of the FRA through 
2011, reorganize the agency and rename it the Federal Rail 
Safety Administration, and place certain new requirements on 
the agency. The current authorization for FRA expired at the 
end of fiscal year 1998 (although the agency received 
appropriations in the intervening years). The legislation would 
specifically authorize the appropriation of about $1.2 billion 
over the next four years for FRSA programs, including some 
grants to improve the safety of rail operations. In addition, 
title 7 would require the NTSB to provide assistance to the 
families of passengers involved in rail accidents that result 
in a loss of life. CBO estimates that provision would cost $1 
million, annually.

                                TABLE 1.--ESTIMATED BUDGETARY IMPACT OF H.R. 2095
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                  By fiscal year, in millions of dollars--
                                                           -----------------------------------------------------
                                                              2007     2008     2009     2010     2011     2012
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                        SPENDING SUBJECT TO APPROPRIATION
 
Spending under Current Law for the Federal Railroad
 Administration:
    Authorization Level\1\................................      184       13       16        0        0        0
    Estimated Outlays.....................................      188       51       42       11        0        0
Proposed Changes:
    Federal Rail Safety Administration Programs:
        Authorization Level...............................        0      230      260      295      335        0
        Estimated Outlays.................................        0      161      217      269      316       93
    Pueblo, Colorado Facility:
        Authorization Level...............................        0       18        0        0        0        0
        Estimated Outlays.................................        0       11        4        2        2        0
    Grants for Programs to Increase Rail Safety:
        Estimated Authorization Level.....................        0       22       22       22       20        0
        Estimated Outlays.................................        0        3        9       15       21       19
    NTSB Assistance after Rail Accidents:
        Estimated Authorization Level.....................        0        1        1        1        1        0
        Estimated Outlays.................................        0        1        1        1        1        0
        Total Changes:
            Estimated Authorization Level.................        0      271      283      318      358        0
            Estimated Outlays.............................        0      176      230      286      340      112
Total Spending Under H.R. 2095 for Rail Safety Progams:
    Estimated Authorization Level.........................      184      284      299      318      358        0
    Estimated Outlays.....................................      188      227      272      297      340      112

                                               CHANGES IN REVENUES

Estimated Revenues........................................        0        6        6        6        6       6
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\Certain rail safety programs, but not most, for which the bill authorizes appropriations through fiscal year
  2011, were authorized by Public Law 109-59 through fiscal year 2009. The current authorization in tiscal years
  2008 and 2009 is in the form of contract authority. The spending of contract authority is controlled by annual
  limits on obligations set on appropriation acts and is therefore considered discretionary.

    Federal Rail Safety Administration (FRSA). The bill would 
require railroad operators to comply with new safety 
requirements in the bill. The bill also would require FRSA to 
establish a chief safety officer, increase track inspectors, 
and administer new grants. Under the provisions of the bill, 
FRSA and the Inspector General of DOT would issue studies and 
reports with respect to rail safety, review and approve plans 
submitted by railroad operators, create model legislation for 
states regarding the safety of grade crossings and the 
prevention of vandalism to railroad safety measures, and 
establish and enforce regulations regarding the safety and 
certification requirements in the bill.
    The bill would authorize the appropriation of $230 million 
in 2008 and $1.1 billion over the 2008-2012 period for support 
of those programs. CBO estimates that implementing those 
provisions would cost $161 million in 2008 and nearly $1.1 
billion over the 2008-2012 period.
    Authorization for Facility in Pueblo, Colorado. The bill 
would authorize the appropriation of $18 million to design, 
develop, and construct the Facility for Underground Rail 
Station and Tunnel at the Transportation Technology Center in 
Pueblo, Colorado. Assuming appropriation of the authorized 
amount, CBO estimates that implementing this provision would 
cost $11 million in 2008 and $18 million over the 2008-2012 
period.
    Grants for Programs To Increase Rail Safety. H.R. 2095 
would direct FRSA to administer three new grant programs. 
Assuming appropriation of the necessary amounts, CBO estimates 
that grants would cost $3 million in 2008 and $67 million over 
the 2008-2012 period. The grants would support the deployment 
of certain automated systems to avoid collisions in the event 
of a mistake by a train operator, and the installation, repair, 
or improvement of grade crossings (the location where highways 
and railroad tracks meet), and Operation Lifesaver--a nonprofit 
organization with the mission to end accidents at grade 
crossings.
    Grants for the Deployment of Train Control Systems. Section 
613 would authorize the appropriation of funds to support the 
deployment of certain automated systems for Class I railroads--
there are currently seven such large railroads in the United 
States--to avoid collisions in the event of a mistake by a 
train operator. Those large railroads would be required to 
implement such systems by 2014 under provisions of the bill. 
Based on information from FRA and industry sources about the 
need for and cost of such systems, CBO estimates that such 
grants would cost $1 million in 2008, $31 million over the 
2008-2012 period, and $9 million after 2012.
    Grants To Support the Improvement of Grade Crossings. 
Section 615 would authorize the appropriation of funds to 
support the installation, repair, or improvement of grade 
crossings. Each grant would be limited to $250,000. Under 
current law, FRA manages a similar program that costs between 
$10 million and $15 million per year. CBO expects that the 
grants authorized in the bill would likely augment the current 
program. Based on information from FRA and industry sources 
about the number of grade-crossing accidents, a significant 
need exists for improving the safety of grade crossings. CBO 
estimates that such grants would add $10 million annually to 
the current grant program at a cost of $1 million in 2008, $31 
million over the 2008-2012 period, and $9 million after 2012.
    Grants for Operation Lifesaver. Section 407 would direct 
FRSA to make additional grants to Operation Lifesaver--a 
nonprofit organization with the mission to end accidents at 
places where roadways cross train tracks and on railroad 
rights-of-way. Under the current authorization for highway 
programs (Public Law 109-59), Operation Lifesaver receives 
$560,000 annually of contract authority (that is subject to 
annual obligation limitations) through fiscal year 2009. The 
bill would specifically authorize the appropriation of an 
additional $1.5 million annually over the 2008-2011 period for 
Operation Lifesaver.
    NTSB Assistance After Rail Accidents. Title 7 would require 
the NTSB to provide assistance to the families of passengers 
who are in rail accidents on Amtrak that result in a major loss 
of life. The bill also would require DOT to establish a task 
force that would recommend ways to improve family assistance 
and to more accurately determine the number of passengers on 
board a train involved in an accident. Based on information 
from the NTSB, and assuming appropriation of the necessary 
amounts, CBO estimates that implementing this provision would 
cost $1 million a year.

Direct spending and revenues

    H.R. 2095 would establish new civil penalties on railroads 
that fail to comply with reporting requirements regarding grade 
crossings and increase penalties for general violations of 
safety laws addressed by the bill. Collections of civil fines 
are recorded as revenues and deposited in the Treasury. The 
bill would increase the maximum penalty for violations of the 
law from $10,000 to $25,000 and would raise the maximum penalty 
for violations that are grossly negligent or that represent a 
repeating pattern of offenses from $20,000 to $100,000. 
According to the FRA, under current law, such civil fines 
generate about $15 million in revenues annually. CBO expects 
that an increase in the fees would decrease the number of 
violations, but we expect that the increased penalty would 
generate additional revenues of $6 million a year (see Table 
2).

                                         TABLE 2.--CHANGES IN REVENUES OVER THE 2008-2017 PERIOD UNDER H.R. 2095
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                  By fiscal year, in millions of dollars--
                                                   -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                     2008    2009    2010    2011    2012    2013    2014    2015    2016    2017   2008-2012  2008-2017
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                   CHANGES IN REVENUES

Estimated Revenues................................       6       6       6       6       6       6       6       6       6       6        30         60
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Intergovernmental and private-sector impact: H.R. 2095 
contains several intergovernmental and private-sector mandates 
as defined in UMRA because it would require railroads to comply 
with hours of service restrictions, certification requirements, 
safety procedures, and reporting requirements, and would 
preempt certain state laws. The total cost to comply with those 
mandates is uncertain and would depend, in part, on regulations 
that have not yet been established. Due to the small number of 
public entities involved, however, CBO estimates that the 
aggregate costs for those entities to comply with the bill's 
mandates would not exceed the annual threshold established in 
UMRA for intergovernmental mandates ($66 million in 2007, 
adjusted annually for inflation). Because the costs to comply 
with the safety systems that would be required by the bill are 
substantial, CBO estimates that the aggregate cost to private 
entities of the mandates in the bill would exceed the annual 
threshold in UMRA for private-sector mandates ($131 million in 
2007, adjusted annually for inflation).
    Other provisions of the bill would authorize grants for 
which state, local, and private-sector entities would be 
eligible. Any costs those entities might incur arising from 
participating in the grant programs would be incurred 
voluntarily.

Mandates that affect both the public and private sector

    By requiring railroads to comply with hours of service 
restrictions, certification requirements, safety procedures, 
reporting requirements, and by preempting certain state laws, 
H.R. 2095 would impose both intergovernmental and private-
sector mandates as defined in UMRA.
    Mandate With Costs Exceeding the Threshold. The bill would 
require the Secretary of Transportation to issue regulations 
requiring railroads to ensure that rail used in track repairs 
is free of internal defects and that the railroads meet a 
specific annual service failure rate.
    According to government sources, most of the track owned by 
state and local entities currently meets those requirements, 
and CBO estimates that additional costs would be small for 
public entities. According to industry and government sources, 
however, most of the track owned by private carriers, 
especially in rural areas, currently does not meet those 
requirements, although no data exist on the exact amount of 
track that would need to be updated. According to industry 
sources, however, the cost to comply with this mandate would be 
well over the annual threshold for the private sector.
    Mandates With Uncertain Costs. The bill contains several 
mandates whose costs CBO cannot estimate at this time. Those 
mandates would:
     Increase restrictions on the number of hours that 
signalmen and train crews are allowed to work over certain time 
periods;
     Require railroads to certify train conductors and 
carmen, establishing minimum training standards for each craft 
of railroad employees as well as track and railroad equipment 
inspectors; and
     Require that railroads report information on the 
status of grade crossings.
    CBO cannot estimate the total costs of those mandates 
because we do not have sufficient information about how 
railroads would choose to adjust their employees' schedules to 
comply with the restrictions and because total costs would 
depend upon future regulatory actions of the Secretary.
    Mandates With Minimal Costs. Several mandates in the bill 
would impose minimal additional costs on railroads, in CBO's 
estimation. Those mandates would:
     Strengthen whistleblower protections for railroad 
employees, specifically protections against intimidation and 
harassment;
     Require railroads to post a toll-free number at 
all grade crossings to report problems, and to warn trains and 
the appropriate public-safety officials about hazardous 
conditions;
     Require railroads to remove vegetation that 
obstructs the view of pedestrians and drivers at grade 
crossings;
     Require railroads to submit plans to address 
railroad worker fatigue, the needs of families of accident 
victims, and accidents at highway-rail grade crossings;
     Require railroads to maintain documentation of 
activities to inspect and maintain the structural integrity of 
certain tunnels through which they operate;
     Prohibit any individual or state from interfering 
in or disrupting the work of the National Transportation Safety 
Board during a railroad disaster;
     Impose restrictions on the unsolicited 
communications of attorneys or potential parties to litigation 
in the event of a railroad accident; and
     Prohibit railroad carriers from interfering with 
the medical treatment of injured workers.
    CBO estimates that the additional costs to comply with 
those mandates would be small because compliance likely would 
involve only a small adjustment in current procedures, or 
because railroads or individuals would be unlikely to engage in 
the prohibited activities. Additionally, the bill would 
establish a grant program for state and local governments to 
address some of those requirements.

Mandates that affect only the private sector

    The bill also would impose additional mandates that affect 
only private rail carriers. Those mandates include, but are not 
limited to, requirements for installation of positive train 
control systems and new switch indicators for tracks; 
requirements for emergency equipment and training for 
crewmembers on trains that carry hazardous materials; and 
requirements related to sleeping quarters for rail employees.
    Positive Train Control (PTC) System. The bill would require 
each Class I railroad carrier, within 12 months after 
enactment, to develop and submit a plan for implementing a 
positive train control system by December 31, 2014. The 
Secretary of Transportation, however, would be authorized to 
extend the date for implementation by two years under certain 
conditions. Positive train control systems are intended to 
reduce collisions in the event of a mistake by a train 
operator. No railroad carrier would be permitted to begin the 
implementation of their plan before getting approval from the 
Secretary of Transportation. According to industry sources, 
some railroad carriers currently are participating in pilot 
programs with the purpose of developing PTC systems. The cost 
to implement such systems is uncertain at this stage of 
development. Based on information from the Federal Railroad 
Administration and the Association of American Railroads, CBO 
estimates that the cost to comply with this mandate would total 
at least a few billion dollars for the industry. The bill would 
authorize grants for eligible private-sector entities to assist 
with the cost of implementing a positive train control system.
    Switch-Position Indicators. The bill would require the 
Secretary to issue regulations requiring railroad carriers to 
install switch-position indicators on main lines in non-
signaled territory, or operate trains at speeds that will allow 
involved train employees to safely stop the train in advance of 
a misaligned switch. The former option would require private 
entities to install those switch-position indicators to alert 
oncoming trains of a misaligned track. According to industry 
sources, the latter option would require private entities to 
operate at speeds up to 50 percent slower than normal. The 
relative cost of each option would depend on the routes of 
service. While the cost of this mandate is uncertain, it is 
likely that compliance costs would be large relative to the 
UMRA's annual threshold. The bill would authorize grants for 
eligible private-sector entities to assist with the cost of 
implementing switch-position monitoring technology.
    Emergency Escape Breathing Apparatus. The bill would 
require railroads to provide an emergency breathing apparatus 
for each crewmember on freight trains that carry hazardous 
materials, and to provide crewmembers with training in the use 
of those devices. According to industry sources, although the 
average cost of the apparatus and the large number of private 
entities that would have to comply suggest that the costs could 
be substantial, the cost of this mandate would be below the 
annual threshold established in UMRA for private-sector 
mandates.
    Sleeping Quarters. The bill would prohibit railroad 
carriers from using camp cars as sleeping quarters for its 
employees one year after the enactment of the bill. Camp cars 
are mostly used by railroad carriers operating in rural areas 
where sleeping accommodations are not readily available. To 
comply with this mandate, private entities would likely have to 
transport crews working in those areas to proper sleeping 
accommodations. According to government and industry sources, 
however, few railroad carriers use camp cars as sleeping 
quarters. Given the small number of entities that would be 
affected, CBO estimates that the costs to comply with this 
mandate would be minimal.

Other impacts: Grants

    The bill would establish a grant program for passenger and 
freight railroad carriers, and state and local governments, to 
install train controls, switch-position indicators, and other 
component technologies. The bill also would establish a grant 
program for state and local governments to improve emergency 
grade crossings. Any costs those entities might incur would 
result from complying with conditions of federal assistance. 
Participation in any federal contract, including those grants, 
is considered a voluntary action. Duties arising from 
participation in such a voluntary federal program are not 
mandates under UMRA.
    Estimate prepared by: Federal Spending: Sarah Puro; Federal 
Revenues: Emily Schlect; Impact on State, Local, and Tribal 
Governments: Elizabeth Cove; Impact on the Private Sector: 
Jacob Kuipers.
    Estimate approved by: Peter H. Fontaine, Deputy Assistant 
Director for Budget Analysis.

                     Compliance with House Rule XXI

    Pursuant to clause 9 of rule XXI of the Rules of the House 
of Representatives, H.R. 2095, the ``Federal Railroad Safety 
Improvement Act of 2007'', contains the following congressional 
earmarks, limited tax benefits, or limited tariff benefits as 
defined in clause 9(d), 9(e), or 9(f) of rule XXI of the Rules 
of the House of Representatives:
    Sec. 105, Pueblo, CO, Facility for Underground Rail Station 
and Tunnel at the Transportation Technology Center--$18 
million, Rep. John T. Salazar.

                   Constitutional Authority Statement

    Pursuant to clause (3)(d)(1) of rule XIII of the Rules of 
the House of Representatives, committee reports on a bill or 
joint resolution of a public character shall include a 
statement citing the specific powers granted to the Congress in 
the Constitution to enact the measure. The Committee on 
Transportation and Infrastructure finds that Congress has the 
authority to enact this measure pursuant to its powers granted 
under Article I, section 8 of the Constitution.

                       Federal Mandates Statement

    The Committee adopts as its own the estimate of Federal 
mandates prepared by the Director of the Congressional Budget 
Office pursuant to section 423 of the Unfunded Mandates Reform 
Act (Public Law 104-4).

                        Preemption Clarification

    Section 423 of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974 
requires the report of any Committee on a bill or joint 
resolution to include a statement on the extent to which the 
bill or joint resolution is intended to preempt state, local, 
or tribal law. The Committee states that H.R. 2095 does not 
preempt any state, local, or tribal law.

                      Advisory Committee Statement

    No advisory committees within the meaning of section 5(b) 
of the Federal Advisory Committee Act are created by this 
legislation.

                Applicability to the Legislative Branch

    The Committee finds that the legislation does not relate to 
the terms and conditions of employment or access to public 
services or accommodations within the meaning of section 
102(b)(3) of the Congressional Accountability Act (Public Law 
104-1).

         Changes in Existing Law Made by the Bill, as Reported

  In compliance with clause 3(e) of rule XIII of the Rules of 
the House of Representatives, changes in existing law made by 
the bill, as reported, are shown as follows (existing law 
proposed to be omitted is enclosed in black brackets, new 
matter is printed in italic, existing law in which no change is 
proposed is shown in roman):

TITLE 49, UNITED STATES CODE

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



SUBTITLE I--DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


                        CHAPTER 1--ORGANIZATION

Sec
101.  Purpose.
     * * * * * * *
[103.  Federal Railroad Administration.]
103.  Federal Railroad Safety Administration.
     * * * * * * *

[Sec. 103. Federal Railroad Administration

  [(a) The Federal Railroad Administration is an administration 
in the Department of Transportation. To carry out all railroad 
safety laws of the United States, the Administration is divided 
on a geographical basis into at least 8 safety offices. The 
Secretary of Transportation is responsible for all acts taken 
under those laws and for ensuring that the laws are uniformly 
administered and enforced among the safety offices.
  [(b) The head of the Administration is the Administrator who 
is appointed by the President, by and with the advice and 
consent of the Senate. The Administrator reports directly to 
the Secretary.
  [(c) The Administrator shall carry out--
          [(1) duties and powers related to railroad safety 
        vested in the Secretary by section 20134(c) and 
        chapters 203-211 of this title, and chapter 213 of this 
        title in carrying out chapters 203-211; and
          [(2) additional duties and powers prescribed by the 
        Secretary.
  [(d) A duty or power specified by subsection (c)(1) of this 
section may be transferred to another part of the Department 
only when specifically provided by law or a reorganization plan 
submitted under chapter 9 of title 5. A decision of the 
Administrator in carrying out those duties or powers and 
involving notice and hearing required by law is 
administratively final.
  [(e) Subject to the provisions of subtitle I of title 40 and 
title III of the Federal Property and Administrative Services 
Act of 1949 (41 U.S.C. 251 et seq.), the Secretary of 
Transportation may make, enter into, and perform such 
contracts, grants, leases, cooperative agreements, and other 
similar transactions with Federal or other public agencies 
(including State and local governments) and private 
organizations and persons, and make such payments, by way of 
advance or reimbursement, as the Secretary may determine to be 
necessary or appropriate to carry out functions of the Federal 
Railroad Administration. The authority of the Secretary granted 
by this subsection shall be carried out by the Administrator. 
Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, no 
authority to enter into contracts or to make payments under 
this subsection shall be effective, except as provided for in 
appropriations Acts.]

Sec. 103. Federal Railroad Safety Administration

  (a) In General.--The Federal Railroad Safety Administration 
(in this section referred to as the ``Administration'') shall 
be an administration in the Department of Transportation. To 
carry out all railroad safety laws of the United States, the 
Administration shall be divided on a geographical basis into at 
least 8 safety offices. The Secretary of Transportation shall 
be responsible for enforcing those laws and for ensuring that 
those laws are uniformly administered and enforced among the 
safety offices.
  (b) Safety as Highest Priority.--In carrying out its duties, 
the Administration shall consider the assignment and 
maintenance of safety as the highest priority, recognizing the 
clear intent, encouragement, and dedication of Congress to the 
furtherance of the highest degree of safety in railroad 
transportation.
  (c) Administrator.--The head of the Administration shall be 
the Administrator who shall be appointed by the President, by 
and with the advice and consent of the Senate, and shall be an 
individual with professional experience in railroad safety, 
hazardous materials safety, or other transportation safety. The 
Administrator shall report directly to the Secretary of 
Transportation.
  (d) Deputy Administrator.--The Administration shall have a 
Deputy Administrator who shall be appointed by the Secretary. 
The Deputy Administrator shall carry out duties and powers 
prescribed by the Administrator.
  (e) Chief Safety Officer.--The Administration shall have an 
Associate Administrator for Railroad Safety appointed in the 
competitive service by the Secretary. The Associate 
Administrator shall be the Chief Safety Officer of the 
Administration. The Associate Administrator shall carry out the 
duties and powers prescribed by the Administrator.
  (f) Duties and Powers of the Administrator.--The 
Administrator shall carry out--
          (1) duties and powers related to railroad safety 
        vested in the Secretary by section 20134(c) and 
        chapters 203 through 211 of this title, and by chapter 
        213 of this title for carrying out chapters 203 through 
        211; and
          (2) other duties and powers prescribed by the 
        Secretary.
  (g) Limitation.--A duty or power specified in subsection 
(f)(1) may be transferred to another part of the Department of 
Transportation or another Federal Government entity only when 
specifically provided by law. A decision of the Administrator 
in carrying out the duties or powers of the Administration and 
involving notice and hearing required by law is 
administratively final.
  (h) Authorities.--Subject to the provisions of subtitle I of 
title 40 and title III of the Federal Property and 
Administrative Services Act of 1949 (41 U.S.C. 251 et seq.), 
the Secretary of Transportation may make, enter into, and 
perform such contracts, grants, leases, cooperative agreements, 
and other similar transactions with Federal or other public 
agencies (including State and local governments) and private 
organizations and persons, and make such payments, by way of 
advance or reimbursement, as the Secretary may determine to be 
necessary or appropriate to carry out functions at the 
Administration. The authority of the Secretary granted by this 
subsection shall be carried out by the Administrator. 
Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, no 
authority to enter into contracts or to make payments under 
this subsection shall be effective, except as provided for in 
appropriations Acts.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


SUBTITLE II--OTHER GOVERNMENT AGENCIES

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


            CHAPTER 11--NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION SAFETY BOARD

                          SUBCHAPTER I--GENERAL

Sec.
1101.  Definitions.
     * * * * * * *

                        SUBCHAPTER III--AUTHORITY

     * * * * * * *
1139.  Assistance to families of passengers involved in rail passenger 
          accidents.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


SUBCHAPTER III--AUTHORITY

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 1139. Assistance to families of passengers involved in rail 
                    passenger accidents

  (a) In General.--As soon as practicable after being notified 
of a rail passenger accident within the United States involving 
a rail passenger carrier and resulting in a major loss of life, 
the Chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board 
shall--
          (1) designate and publicize the name and phone number 
        of a director of family support services who shall be 
        an employee of the Board and shall be responsible for 
        acting as a point of contact within the Federal 
        Government for the families of passengers involved in 
        the accident and a liaison between the rail passenger 
        carrier and the families; and
          (2) designate an independent nonprofit organization, 
        with experience in disasters and posttrauma 
        communication with families, which shall have primary 
        responsibility for coordinating the emotional care and 
        support of the families of passengers involved in the 
        accident.
  (b) Responsibilities of the Board.--The Board shall have 
primary Federal responsibility for--
          (1) facilitating the recovery and identification of 
        fatally injured passengers involved in an accident 
        described in subsection (a); and
          (2) communicating with the families of passengers 
        involved in the accident as to the roles of--
                  (A) the organization designated for an 
                accident under subsection (a)(2);
                  (B) Government agencies; and
                  (C) the rail passenger carrier involved,
        with respect to the accident and the post-accident 
        activities.
  (c) Responsibilities of Designated Organization.--The 
organization designated for an accident under subsection (a)(2) 
shall have the following responsibilities with respect to the 
families of passengers involved in the accident:
          (1) To provide mental health and counseling services, 
        in coordination with the disaster response team of the 
        rail passenger carrier involved.
          (2) To take such actions as may be necessary to 
        provide an environment in which the families may grieve 
        in private.
          (3) To meet with the families who have traveled to 
        the location of the accident, to contact the families 
        unable to travel to such location, and to contact all 
        affected families periodically thereafter until such 
        time as the organization, in consultation with the 
        director of family support services designated for the 
        accident under subsection (a)(1), determines that 
        further assistance is no longer needed.
          (4) To arrange a suitable memorial service, in 
        consultation with the families.
  (d) Passenger Lists.--
          (1) Requests for passenger lists.--
                  (A) Requests by director of family support 
                services.--It shall be the responsibility of 
                the director of family support services 
                designated for an accident under subsection 
                (a)(1) to request, as soon as practicable, from 
                the rail passenger carrier involved in the 
                accident a list, which is based on the best 
                available information at the time of the 
                request, of the names of the passengers that 
                were aboard the rail passenger carrier's train 
                involved in the accident. A rail passenger 
                carrier shall use reasonable efforts, with 
                respect to its unreserved trains, and 
                passengers not holding reservations on its 
                other trains, to ascertain the names of 
                passengers aboard a train involved in an 
                accident.
                  (B) Requests by designated organization.--The 
                organization designated for an accident under 
                subsection (a)(2) may request from the rail 
                passenger carrier involved in the accident a 
                list described in subparagraph (A).
          (2) Use of information.--The director of family 
        support services and the organization may not release 
        to any person information on a list obtained under 
        paragraph (1) but may provide information on the list 
        about a passenger to the family of the passenger to the 
        extent that the director of family support services or 
        the organization considers appropriate.
  (e) Continuing Responsibilities of the Board.--In the course 
of its investigation of an accident described in subsection 
(a), the Board shall, to the maximum extent practicable, ensure 
that the families of passengers involved in the accident--
          (1) are briefed, prior to any public briefing, about 
        the accident and any other findings from the 
        investigation; and
          (2) are individually informed of and allowed to 
        attend any public hearings and meetings of the Board 
        about the accident.
  (f) Use of Rail Passenger Carrier Resources.--To the extent 
practicable, the organization designated for an accident under 
subsection (a)(2) shall coordinate its activities with the rail 
passenger carrier involved in the accident to facilitate the 
reasonable use of the resources of the carrier.
  (g) Prohibited Actions.--
          (1) Actions to impede the board.--No person 
        (including a State or political subdivision) may impede 
        the ability of the Board (including the director of 
        family support services designated for an accident 
        under subsection (a)(1)), or an organization designated 
        for an accident under subsection (a)(2), to carry out 
        its responsibilities under this section or the ability 
        of the families of passengers involved in the accident 
        to have contact with one another.
          (2) Unsolicited communications.--No unsolicited 
        communication concerning a potential action for 
        personal injury or wrongful death may be made by an 
        attorney (including any associate, agent, employee, or 
        other representative of an attorney) or any potential 
        party to the litigation to an individual (other than an 
        employee of the rail passenger carrier) injured in the 
        accident, or to a relative of an individual involved in 
        the accident, before the 45th day following the date of 
        the accident.
          (3) Prohibition on actions to prevent mental health 
        and counseling services.--No State or political 
        subdivision may prevent the employees, agents, or 
        volunteers of an organization designated for an 
        accident under subsection (a)(2) from providing mental 
        health and counseling services under subsection (c)(1) 
        in the 30-day period beginning on the date of the 
        accident. The director of family support services 
        designated for the accident under subsection (a)(1) may 
        extend such period for not to exceed an additional 30 
        days if the director determines that the extension is 
        necessary to meet the needs of the families and if 
        State and local authorities are notified of the 
        determination.
  (h) Definitions.--In this section, the following definitions 
apply:
          (1) Rail passenger accident.--The term ``rail 
        passenger accident'' means any rail passenger disaster 
        occurring in the provision of--
                  (A) interstate intercity rail passenger 
                transportation (as such term is defined in 
                section 24102); or
                  (B) interstate or intrastate high-speed rail 
                (as such term is defined in section 26105) 
                transportation,
        regardless of its cause or suspected cause.
          (2) Rail passenger carrier.--The term ``rail 
        passenger carrier'' means a rail carrier providing--
                  (A) interstate intercity rail passenger 
                transportation (as such term is defined in 
                section 24102); or
                  (B) interstate or intrastate high-speed rail 
                (as such term is defined in section 26105) 
                transportation,
        except that such term shall not include a tourist, 
        historic, scenic, or excursion rail carrier.
          (3) Passenger.--The term ``passenger'' includes--
                  (A) an employee of a rail passenger carrier 
                aboard a train;
                  (B) any other person aboard the train without 
                regard to whether the person paid for the 
                transportation, occupied a seat, or held a 
                reservation for the rail transportation; and
                  (C) any other person injured or killed in the 
                accident.
  (i) Limitation on Statutory Construction.--Nothing in this 
section may be construed as limiting the actions that a rail 
passenger carrier may take, or the obligations that a rail 
passenger carrier may have, in providing assistance to the 
families of passengers involved in a rail passenger accident.
  (j) Relinquishment of Investigative Priority.--
          (1) General rule.--This section (other than 
        subsection (g)) shall not apply to a railroad accident 
        if the Board has relinquished investigative priority 
        under section 1131(a)(2)(B) and the Federal agency to 
        which the Board relinquished investigative priority is 
        willing and able to provide assistance to the victims 
        and families of the passengers involved in the 
        accident.
          (2) Board assistance.--If this section does not apply 
        to a railroad accident because the Board has 
        relinquished investigative priority with respect to the 
        accident, the Board shall assist, to the maximum extent 
        possible, the agency to which the Board has 
        relinquished investigative priority in assisting 
        families with respect to the accident.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


                       SUBTITLE V--RAIL PROGRAMS

                             PART A--SAFETY

Chapter                                                             Sec.
      GENERAL......................................................20101
     * * * * * * *

                    PART C--PASSENGER TRANSPORTATION

      GENERAL......................................................24101
     * * * * * * *
      FAMILY ASSISTANCE............................................25101
     * * * * * * *


                             PART A--SAFETY


     * * * * * * *

                          CHAPTER 201--GENERAL

                          SUBCHAPTER I--GENERAL

Sec
20101.  Purpose.
     * * * * * * *
20116.  Rulemaking process.
     * * * * * * *
20118.  Enforcement transparency.

               SUBCHAPTER II--PARTICULAR ASPECTS OF SAFETY

     * * * * * * *
[20151.  Railroad trespassing and vandalism prevention strategy.]
20151.  Railroad trespassing, vandalism, and signal violation prevention 
          strategy.
     * * * * * * *
20156.  Roadway user sight distance at highway-rail grade crossings.
20157.  National crossing inventory.
20158.  Warning in nonsignaled territory.
20159.  Track safety.
20160.  Certification of conductors.
20161.  Minimum training standards.
20162.  Prompt medical attention.
20163.  Emergency escape breathing apparatus.
20164.  Certification of carmen.
20165.  Fostering introduction of new technology to improve safety at 
          highway-rail grade crossings.
     * * * * * * *

SUBCHAPTER I--GENERAL

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 20104. Emergency authority

  (a) Ordering Restrictions and Prohibitions.--(1) If, through 
testing, inspection, investigation, or research carried out 
under this chapter, the Secretary of Transportation decides 
that an unsafe condition or practice, or a combination of 
unsafe conditions and practices, causes an emergency situation 
involving a hazard of [death or personal injury] death, 
personal injury, or significant harm to the environment, the 
Secretary immediately may order restrictions and prohibitions, 
without regard to section 20103(e) of this title, that may be 
necessary to abate the situation.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 20106. National uniformity of regulation

  (a) In General.--Laws, regulations, and orders related to 
railroad safety and laws, regulations, and orders related to 
railroad security shall be nationally uniform to the extent 
practicable. A State may adopt or continue in force a law, 
regulation, or order related to railroad safety or security 
until the Secretary of Transportation (with respect to railroad 
safety matters), or the Secretary of Homeland Security (with 
respect to railroad security matters), prescribes a regulation 
or issues an order covering the subject matter of the State 
requirement. A State may adopt or continue in force an 
additional or more stringent law, regulation, or order related 
to railroad safety or security when the law, regulation, or 
order--
          (1)  * * *

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

  (b) Clarifications Regarding State Law Causes of Action.--
          (1) In general.--Nothing in this section shall be 
        construed to preempt an action under State law seeking 
        damages for personal injury, death, or property damage 
        alleging that a party has violated the Federal standard 
        of care established by a regulation or order issued by 
        the Secretary of Transportation (with respect to 
        railroad safety matters), or the Secretary of Homeland 
        Security (with respect to the railroad security 
        matters) covering the subject matter as provided in 
        subsection (a) of this section. This includes actions 
        under State law for a party's violation of or failure 
        to adequately comply with its own plan, rule, or 
        standard that it created pursuant to a regulation or 
        order issued by either of the Secretaries or for a 
        party's failure to adequately comply with a law, 
        regulation, or order issued by either of the 
        Secretaries. Actions under State law for a violation of 
        a State law, regulation, or order that is not 
        inconsistent with subsection (a)(2) are also not 
        preempted.
          (2) Retroactivity.--This subsection shall apply to 
        all pending State law causes of action arising from 
        events or activities occurring on or after January 18, 
        2002.

Sec. 20107. Inspection and investigation

  (a) * * *

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

  (c) Railroad Radio Communications.--
          (1) In general.--To carry out the Secretary's 
        responsibilities under this part and under chapter 51, 
        the Secretary may authorize officers, employees, or 
        agents of the Secretary to conduct the following 
        activities in circumstances the Secretary finds to be 
        reasonable:
                  (A) Intercepting a radio communication, with 
                or without the consent of the sender or other 
                receivers of the communication, but only where 
                such communication is broadcast or transmitted 
                over a radio frequency which is--
                          (i) authorized for use by one or more 
                        railroad carriers by the Federal 
                        Communications Commission; and
                          (ii) primarily used by such railroad 
                        carriers for communications in 
                        connection with railroad operations.
                  (B) Communicating the existence, contents, 
                substance, purport, effect, or meaning of the 
                communication, subject to the restrictions in 
                paragraph (3).
                  (C) Receiving or assisting in receiving the 
                communication (or any information therein 
                contained).
                  (D) Disclosing the contents, substance, 
                purport, effect, or meaning of the 
                communication (or any part thereof of such 
                communication) or using the communication (or 
                any information contained therein), subject to 
                the restrictions in paragraph (3), after having 
                received the communication or acquired 
                knowledge of the contents, substance, purport, 
                effect, or meaning of the communication (or any 
                part thereof).
                  (E) Recording the communication by any means, 
                including writing and tape recording.
          (2) Accident prevention and accident investigation.--
        The Secretary, and officers, employees, and agents of 
        the Department of Transportation authorized by the 
        Secretary, may engage in the activities authorized by 
        paragraph (1) for the purpose of accident prevention 
        and accident investigation.
          (3) Use of information.--(A) Information obtained 
        through activities authorized by paragraphs (1) and (2) 
        shall not be admitted into evidence in any 
        administrative or judicial proceeding except--
                  (i) in a prosecution of a felony under 
                Federal or State criminal law; or
                  (ii) to impeach evidence offered by a party 
                other than the Federal Government regarding the 
                existence, electronic characteristics, content, 
                substance, purport, effect, meaning, or timing 
                of, or identity of parties to, a communication 
                intercepted pursuant to paragraphs (1) and (2) 
                in proceedings pursuant to section 5122, 5123, 
                20702(b), 20111, 20112, 20113, or 20114 of this 
                title.
          (B) If information obtained through activities set 
        forth in paragraphs (1) and (2) is admitted into 
        evidence for impeachment purposes in accordance with 
        subparagraph (A), the court, administrative law judge, 
        or other officer before whom the proceeding is 
        conducted may make such protective orders regarding the 
        confidentiality or use of the information as may be 
        appropriate in the circumstances to protect privacy and 
        administer justice.
          (C) No evidence shall be excluded in an 
        administrative or judicial proceeding solely because 
        the government would not have learned of the existence 
        of or obtained such evidence but for the interception 
        of information that is not admissible in such 
        proceeding under subparagraph (A).
          (D) Information obtained through activities set forth 
        in paragraphs (1) and (2) shall not be subject to 
        publication or disclosure, or search or review in 
        connection therewith, under section 552 of title 5.
          (E) Nothing in this subsection shall be construed to 
        impair or otherwise affect the authority of the United 
        States to intercept a communication, and collect, 
        retain, analyze, use, and disseminate the information 
        obtained thereby, under a provision of law other than 
        this subsection.
          (4) Application with other law.--Section 705 of the 
        Communications Act of 1934 (47 U.S.C. 605) and chapter 
        119 of title 18 shall not apply to conduct authorized 
        by and pursuant to this subsection.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


[Sec. 20109. Employee protections

  [(a) Filing Complaints and Testifying.--A railroad carrier 
engaged in interstate or foreign commerce may not discharge or 
in any way discriminate against an employee because the 
employee, whether acting for the employee or as a 
representative, has--
          [(1) filed a complaint or brought or caused to be 
        brought a proceeding related to the enforcement of this 
        part or, as applicable to railroad safety, chapter 51 
        or 57 of this title; or
          [(2) testified or will testify in that proceeding.
  [(b) Refusing To Work Because of Hazardous Conditions.--(1) A 
railroad carrier engaged in interstate or foreign commerce may 
not discharge or in any way discriminate against an employee 
for refusing to work when confronted by a hazardous condition 
related to the performance of the employee's duties, if--
          [(A) the refusal is made in good faith and no 
        reasonable alternative to the refusal is available to 
        the employee;
          [(B) a reasonable individual in the circumstances 
        then confronting the employee would conclude that--
                  [(i) the hazardous condition presents an 
                imminent danger of death or serious injury; and
                  [(ii) the urgency of the situation does not 
                allow sufficient time to eliminate the danger 
                through regular statutory means; and
          [(C) the employee, where possible, has notified the 
        carrier of the hazardous condition and the intention 
        not to perform further work unless the condition is 
        corrected immediately.
  [(2) This subsection does not apply to security personnel 
employed by a carrier to protect individuals and property 
transported by railroad.
  [(c) Dispute Resolution.--A dispute, grievance, or claim 
arising under this section is subject to resolution under 
section 3 of the Railway Labor Act (45 U.S.C. 153). In a 
proceeding by the National Railroad Adjustment Board, a 
division or delegate of the Board, or another board of 
adjustment established under section 3 to resolve the dispute, 
grievance, or claim, the proceeding shall be expedited and the 
dispute, grievance, or claim shall be resolved not later than 
180 days after it is filed. If the violation is a form of 
discrimination that does not involve discharge, suspension, or 
another action affecting pay, and no other remedy is available 
under this subsection, the Board, division, delegate, or other 
board of adjustment may award the employee reasonable damages, 
including punitive damages, of not more than $20,000.
  [(d) Election of Remedies.--An employee of a railroad carrier 
may not seek protection under both this section and another 
provision of law for the same allegedly unlawful act of the 
carrier.
  [(e) Disclosure of Identity.--(1) Except as provided in 
paragraph (2) of this subsection, or with the written consent 
of the employee, the Secretary of Transportation may not 
disclose the name of an employee of a railroad carrier who has 
provided information about an alleged violation of this part 
or, as applicable to railroad safety, chapter 51 or 57 of this 
title or a regulation prescribed or order issued under any of 
those provisions.
  [(2) The Secretary shall disclose to the Attorney General the 
name of an employee described in paragraph (1) of this 
subsection if the matter is referred to the Attorney General 
for enforcement.]

Sec. 20109. Employee protections

  (a) Protected Actions.--A railroad carrier engaged in 
interstate or foreign commerce, and an officer or employee of 
such a railroad carrier, shall not by threat, intimidation, or 
otherwise attempt to prevent an employee from, or discharge, 
discipline, or in any way discriminate against an employee 
for--
          (1) filing a complaint or bringing or causing to be 
        brought a proceeding related to the enforcement of this 
        part or, as applicable to railroad safety, chapter 51 
        or 57 of this title;
          (2) testifying in a proceeding described in paragraph 
        (1);
          (3) notifying, or attempting to notify, the railroad 
        carrier or the Secretary of Transportation of a work-
        related personal injury or work-related illness of an 
        employee;
          (4) cooperating with a safety investigation by the 
        Secretary of Transportation or the National 
        Transportation Safety Board;
          (5) furnishing information to the Secretary of 
        Transportation, the National Transportation Safety 
        Board, or any other public official as to the facts 
        relating to any accident or incident resulting in 
        injury or death to an individual or damage to property 
        occurring in connection with railroad transportation; 
        or
          (6) accurately reporting hours of duty pursuant to 
        chapter 211.
  (b) Hazardous Conditions.--(1) A railroad carrier engaged in 
interstate or foreign commerce, and an officer or employee of 
such a railroad carrier, shall not by threat, intimidation, or 
otherwise attempt to prevent an employee from, or discharge, 
discipline, or in any way discriminate against an employee 
for--
          (A) reporting a hazardous condition;
          (B) refusing to work when confronted by a hazardous 
        condition related to the performance of the employee's 
        duties, if the conditions described in paragraph (2) 
        exist; or
          (C) refusing to authorize the use of any safety-
        related equipment, track, or structures, if the 
        employee is responsible for the inspection or repair of 
        the equipment, track, or structures, when the employee 
        believes that the equipment, track, or structures are 
        in a hazardous condition, if the conditions described 
        in paragraph (2) exist.
  (2) A refusal is protected under paragraph (1)(B) and (C) 
if--
          (A) the refusal is made in good faith and no 
        reasonable alternative to the refusal is available to 
        the employee;
          (B) the employee reasonably concludes that--
                  (i) the hazardous condition presents an 
                imminent danger of death or serious injury; and
                  (ii) the urgency of the situation does not 
                allow sufficient time to eliminate the danger 
                without such refusal; and
          (C) the employee, where possible, has notified the 
        carrier of the existence of the hazardous condition and 
        the intention not to perform further work, or not to 
        authorize the use of the hazardous equipment, track, or 
        structures, unless the condition is corrected 
        immediately or the equipment, track, or structures are 
        repaired properly or replaced.
  (3) This subsection does not apply to security personnel 
employed by a railroad carrier to protect individuals and 
property transported by railroad.
  (c) Enforcement Action.--
          (1) In general.--An employee who alleges discharge or 
        other discrimination by any person in violation of 
        subsection (a) may seek relief in accordance with the 
        provisions of this section, with any petition or other 
        request for relief under this section to be initiated 
        by filing a complaint with the Secretary of Labor.
          (2) Procedure.--
                  (A) In general.--An action under this section 
                shall be governed under the rules and 
                procedures set forth in section 42121(b).
                  (B) Exception.--Notification made under 
                section 42121(b)(1) shall be made to the person 
                named in the complaint and to the person's 
                employer.
                  (C) Burdens of proof.--An action brought 
                under this section shall be governed by the 
                legal burdens of proof set forth in section 
                42121(b).
                  (D) Statute of limitations.--An action under 
                this section shall be commenced not later than 
                1 year after the date on which the violation 
                occurs.
          (3) De novo review.--If the Secretary of Labor has 
        not issued a final decision within 180 days after the 
        filing of the complaint (or, in the event that a final 
        order or decision is issued by the Secretary of Labor, 
        whether within the 180-day period or thereafter, then, 
        not later than 90 days after such an order or decision 
        is issued), the employee may bring an original action 
        at law or equity for de novo review in the appropriate 
        district court of the United States, which shall have 
        jurisdiction over such an action without regard to the 
        amount in controversy, and which action shall, at the 
        request of either party to such action, be tried by the 
        court with a jury.
  (d) Remedies.--
          (1) In general.--An employee prevailing in any action 
        under this section shall be entitled to all relief 
        necessary to make the covered individual whole.
          (2) Damages.--Relief in an action under this section 
        shall include--
                  (A) reinstatement with the same seniority 
                status that the covered individual would have 
                had, but for the discrimination;
                  (B) the amount of any back pay, with 
                interest; and
                  (C) compensation for any special damages 
                sustained as a result of the discrimination, 
                including litigation costs, expert witness 
                fees, and reasonable attorney fees.
          (3) Possible relief.--Relief may also include 
        punitive damages in an amount not to exceed 10 times 
        the amount of any compensatory damages awarded under 
        this section.
  (e) Criminal Penalties.--
          (1) In general.--It shall be unlawful for any 
        railroad carrier to commit an act prohibited by 
        subsection (a). Any person who willfully violates this 
        section by terminating or retaliating against any such 
        covered individual who makes a claim under this section 
        shall be fined under title 18, United States Code, 
        imprisoned not more than 1 year, or both.
          (2) Reporting requirement.--
                  (A) In general.--The Attorney General shall 
                submit to the Committee on Transportation and 
                Infrastructure of the House of Representatives 
                and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and 
                Transportation of the Senate an annual report 
                on the enforcement of paragraph (1).
                  (B) Contents.--Each such report shall--
                          (i) identify each case in which 
                        formal charges under paragraph (1) were 
                        brought;
                          (ii) describe the status or 
                        disposition of each such case; and
                          (iii) in any actions under subsection 
                        (c)(1) in which the employee was the 
                        prevailing party or the substantially 
                        prevailing party, indicate whether or 
                        not any formal charges under paragraph 
                        (1) of this subsection have been 
                        brought and, if not, the reasons 
                        therefor.
  (f) No Preemption.--Nothing in this section preempts or 
diminishes any other safeguards against discrimination, 
demotion, discharge, suspension, threats, harassment, 
reprimand, retaliation, or any other manner of discrimination 
provided by Federal or State law.
  (g) Rights Retained by Covered Individual.--Nothing in this 
section shall be deemed to diminish the rights, privileges, or 
remedies of any covered individual under any Federal or State 
law or under any collective bargaining agreement. The rights 
and remedies in this section may not be waived by any 
agreement, policy, form, or condition of employment.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 20112. Enforcement by the Attorney General

  (a) Civil Actions.--At the request of the Secretary of 
Transportation, the Attorney General may bring a civil action 
in a district court of the United States--
          (1) to enjoin a violation of, or to enforce, this 
        part or a railroad safety regulation prescribed or 
        order issued by the Secretary;
          (2) to collect a civil penalty imposed or an amount 
        agreed on in compromise under section [21301] 21301, 
        21302, or 21303 of this title; or
          (3) to enforce a [subpena] subpoena, request for 
        admissions, request for production of documents or 
        other tangible things, or request for testimony by 
        deposition issued by the Secretary under this 
        [chapter.] part.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 20116. Rulemaking process

  No rule or order issued by the Secretary under this part 
shall be effective if it incorporates by reference a code, 
rule, standard, requirement, or practice issued by an 
association or other entity that is not an agency of the 
Federal Government, unless that reference is to a particular 
code, rule, standard, requirement, or practice adopted before 
the date on which the rule is issued by the Secretary, and 
unless the date on which the code, rule, standard, requirement, 
or practice was adopted is specifically cited in the rule.

Sec. 20117. Authorization of appropriations

  [(a) General.--(1) Not more than the following amounts may be 
appropriated to the Secretary of Transportation to carry out 
this chapter:
          [(A) $68,283,000 for the fiscal year ending September 
        30, 1993.
          [(B) $71,690,000 for the fiscal year ending September 
        30, 1994.
          [(C) $68,289,000 for fiscal year 1995.
          [(D) $75,112,000 for fiscal year 1996.
          [(E) $82,563,000 for fiscal year 1997.
          [(F) $90,739,000 for fiscal year 1998.
  [(2) Not more than $5,000,000 may be appropriated to the 
Secretary for the fiscal year ending September 30, 1993, to 
carry out section 20105 of this title.]
  (a) In General.--(1) There are authorized to be appropriated 
to the Secretary of Transportation to carry out this part and 
to carry out responsibilities under chapter 51 as delegated or 
authorized by the Secretary--
          (A) $230,000,000 for fiscal year 2008;
          (B) $260,000,000 for fiscal year 2009;
          (C) $295,000,000 for fiscal year 2010; and
          (D) $335,000,000 for fiscal year 2011.
  (2) With amounts appropriated pursuant to paragraph (1), the 
Secretary shall purchase 6 Gage Restraint Measurement System 
vehicles and 5 track geometry vehicles to enable the deployment 
of 1 Gage Restraint Measurement System vehicle and 1 track 
geometry vehicle in each region.
  (3) There are authorized to be appropriated to the Secretary 
$18,000,000 for the period encompassing fiscal years 2008 
through 2011 to design, develop, and construct the Facility for 
Underground Rail Station and Tunnel at the Transportation 
Technology Center in Pueblo, Colorado. The facility shall be 
used to test and evaluate the vulnerabilities of above-ground 
and underground rail tunnels to prevent accidents and incidents 
in such tunnels, to mitigate and remediate the consequences of 
any such accidents or incidents, and to provide a realistic 
scenario for training emergency responders.
  (4) Such sums as may be necessary from the amount 
appropriated pursuant to paragraph (1) for each of the fiscal 
years 2008 through 2011 shall be made available to the 
Secretary for personnel in regional offices and in Washington, 
D.C., whose duties primarily involve rail security.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 20118. Enforcement transparency

  (a) In General.--Not later than December 31, 2007, the 
Secretary of Transportation shall--
          (1) provide a monthly updated summary to the public 
        of all railroad enforcement actions taken by the 
        Secretary or the Federal Railroad Safety 
        Administration, from the time a notice commencing an 
        enforcement action is issued until the enforcement 
        action is final;
          (2) include in each such summary identification of 
        the railroad carrier or person involved in the 
        enforcement activity, the type of alleged violation, 
        the penalty or penalties proposed, any changes in case 
        status since the previous summary, the final assessment 
        amount of each penalty, and the reasons for a reduction 
        in the proposed penalty, if appropriate; and
          (3) provide a mechanism by which a railroad carrier 
        or person named in an enforcement action may make 
        information, explanations, or documents it believes are 
        responsive to the enforcement action available to the 
        public.
  (b) Electronic Availability.--Each summary under this section 
shall be made available to the public by electronic means.
  (c) Relationship to Foia.--Nothing in this section shall be 
construed to require disclosure of information or records that 
are exempt from disclosure under section 552 of title 5.

SUBCHAPTER II--PARTICULAR ASPECTS OF SAFETY

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 20134. Grade crossings and railroad rights of way

  (a) General.--To the extent practicable, the Secretary of 
Transportation shall maintain a coordinated effort to develop 
and carry out solutions to the railroad grade crossing problem 
and measures to protect pedestrians in densely populated areas 
along railroad rights of way. To carry out this subsection, the 
Secretary may use the authority of the Secretary under this 
chapter and over highway, traffic, and motor vehicle safety and 
over highway construction. The Secretary may purchase 
promotional items of nominal value and distribute them to the 
public without charge as part of an educational or awareness 
program to accomplish the purposes of this section and of any 
other sections of this title related to improving the safety of 
highway-rail crossings and to prevent trespass on railroad 
rights of way, and the Secretary shall prescribe guidelines for 
the administration of this authority.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


[Sec. 20151. Railroad trespassing and vandalism prevention strategy]

Sec. 20151. Railroad trespassing, vandalism, and signal violation 
                    prevention strategy

  (a) Evaluation of Existing Laws.--In consultation with 
affected parties, the Secretary of Transportation shall 
evaluate and review current local, State, and Federal laws 
regarding trespassing on railroad property [and vandalism 
affecting railroad safety], vandalism affecting railroad 
safety, and violations of grade crossing signals, and develop 
model prevention strategies and enforcement laws to be used for 
the consideration of State and local legislatures and 
governmental entities. The first such evaluation and review, 
concerning trespassing and vandalism, shall be completed within 
1 year after November 2, 1994. The second such evaluation and 
review, concerning violations of grade crossing signals, shall 
be completed before April 1, 2008. The Secretary shall revise 
such model prevention strategies and enforcement codes 
periodically.
  (b) Outreach Program for Trespassing and Vandalism 
Prevention.--The Secretary shall develop and maintain a 
comprehensive outreach program to improve communications among 
Federal railroad safety inspectors, State inspectors certified 
by the Federal Railroad Administration, railroad police, and 
State and local law enforcement officers, for the purpose of 
addressing trespassing and vandalism problems on railroad 
property, and strengthening relevant enforcement strategies. 
This program shall be designed to increase public and police 
awareness of the illegality of, dangers inherent in, and the 
extent of, trespassing on railroad rights-of-way, to develop 
strategies to improve the prevention of trespassing and 
vandalism, and to improve the enforcement of laws relating to 
railroad trespass, vandalism, and safety.
  (c) Model Legislation.--(1) Within 18 months after November 
2, 1994, the Secretary, after consultation with State and local 
governments and railroad carriers, shall develop and make 
available to State and local governments model State 
legislation providing for--
          [(1)] (A) civil or criminal penalties, or both, for 
        vandalism of railroad equipment or property which could 
        affect the safety of the public or of railroad 
        employees; and
          [(2)] (B) civil or criminal penalties, or both, for 
        trespassing on a railroad owned or leased right-of-way.
  (2) Within 18 months after the date of enactment of the 
Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007, the Secretary, 
after consultation with State and local governments, railroad 
carriers, and rail labor organizations, shall develop and make 
available to State and local governments model State 
legislation providing for civil or criminal penalties, or both, 
for violations of grade crossing signals.
  (d) Definition.--For purposes of this section, the term 
``violation of grade crossing signals'' includes any action by 
a motorist, unless directed by an authorized safety officer--
          (1) to drive around a grade crossing gate in a 
        position intended to block passage over railroad 
        tracks;
          (2) to drive through a flashing grade crossing 
        signal;
          (3) to drive through a grade crossing with passive 
        warning signs without ensuring that the grade crossing 
        could be safely crossed before any train arrived; and
          (4) in the vicinity of a grade crossing, that creates 
        a hazard of an accident involving injury or property 
        damage at the grade crossing.

[Sec. 20152. Emergency notification of grade crossing problems

  [(a) Pilot Programs.--The Secretary of Transportation shall 
conduct a pilot program to demonstrate an emergency 
notification system utilizing a toll free telephone number that 
the public can use to convey to railroad carriers, either 
directly or through public safety personnel, information about 
malfunctions or other safety problems at railroad-highway grade 
crossings. The pilot program, at a minimum--
          [(1) shall include railroad-highway grade crossings 
        in at least 2 States;
          [(2) shall include provisions for public education 
        and awareness of the program; and
          [(3) shall require information to be posted at the 
        railroad-highway grade crossing describing the 
        emergency notification system and instructions on how 
        to use the system.
The Secretary may, by grant, provide funding for the expense of 
information signs and public awareness campaigns necessary to 
demonstrate the notification system.
  [(b) Report.--The Secretary shall complete the pilot program 
not later than 24 months after November 2, 1994, and shall 
submit to the Congress not later than 30 months after November 
2, 1994, an evaluation of the pilot program, together with 
findings as to the effectiveness of such emergency notification 
systems. The report shall compare and contrast the structure, 
cost, and effectiveness of the pilot program with other 
emergency notification systems in effect within other States. 
Such evaluation shall include analyses of the safety benefits 
derived from the programs, cost effectiveness, and the burdens 
on participants, including railroad carriers and law 
enforcement personnel.]

Sec. 20152. Emergency notification of grade crossing problems

  Not later than 18 months after the date of enactment of the 
Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007, the Secretary 
of Transportation shall require each railroad carrier to--
          (1) establish and maintain a toll-free telephone 
        service, for rights-of-way over which it dispatches 
        trains, to directly receive calls reporting--
                  (A) malfunctions of signals, crossing gates, 
                and other devices to promote safety at the 
                grade crossing of railroad tracks on those 
                rights-of-way and public or private roads; and
                  (B) disabled vehicles blocking railroad 
                tracks at such grade crossings;
          (2) upon receiving a report of a malfunction or 
        disabled vehicle pursuant to paragraph (1), immediately 
        contact trains operating near the grade crossing to 
        warn them of the malfunction or disabled vehicle;
          (3) upon receiving a report of a malfunction or 
        disabled vehicle pursuant to paragraph (1), and after 
        contacting trains pursuant to paragraph (2), contact, 
        as necessary, appropriate public safety officials 
        having jurisdiction over the grade crossing to provide 
        them with the information necessary for them to direct 
        traffic, assist in the removal of the disabled vehicle, 
        or carry out other activities appropriate to responding 
        to the hazardous circumstance; and
          (4) ensure the placement at each grade crossing on 
        rights-of-way that it owns of appropriately located 
        signs, on which shall appear, at a minimum--
                  (A) a toll-free telephone number to be used 
                for placing calls described in paragraph (1) to 
                the railroad carrier dispatching trains on that 
                right-of-way;
                  (B) an explanation of the purpose of that 
                toll-free number as described in paragraph (1); 
                and
                  (C) the grade crossing number assigned for 
                that crossing by the National Highway-Rail 
                Crossing Inventory established by the 
                Department of Transportation.
The Secretary of Transportation shall implement this section 
through appropriate regulations.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 20156. Roadway user sight distance at highway-rail grade crossings

  (a) In General.--Not later than 18 months after the date of 
enactment of the Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 
2007, the Secretary of Transportation shall prescribe 
regulations that require each railroad carrier to remove from 
its rights-of-way at all public highway-rail grade crossings, 
and at all private highway-rail grade crossings open to 
unrestricted public access (as declared in writing by the 
holder of the crossing right), grass, brush, shrubbery, trees, 
and other vegetation which may obstruct the view of a 
pedestrian or a vehicle operator for a reasonable distance in 
either direction of the train's approach, and to maintain its 
rights-of-way at all such crossings free of such vegetation. In 
prescribing the regulations, the Secretary shall take into 
consideration to the extent practicable--
          (1) the type of warning device or warning devices 
        installed at the crossing;
          (2) factors affecting the timeliness and 
        effectiveness of roadway user decisionmaking, including 
        the maximum allowable roadway speed, maximum authorized 
        train speed, angle of intersection, and topography;
          (3) the presence or absence of other sight distance 
        obstructions off the railroad right-of-way; and
          (4) any other factors affecting safety at such 
        crossings.
  (b) Protected Vegetation.--In promulgating regulations 
pursuant to this section, the Secretary may make allowance for 
preservation of trees and other ornamental or protective growth 
where State or local law or policy would otherwise protect the 
vegetation from removal and where the roadway authority or 
private crossing holder is notified of the sight distance 
obstruction and, within a reasonable period specified by the 
regulation, takes appropriate temporary and permanent action to 
abate the hazard to roadway users (such as by closing the 
crossing, posting supplementary signage, installing active 
warning devices, lowering roadway speed, or installing traffic 
calming devices).
  (c) No Preemption.--Notwithstanding section 20106, 
subsections (a) and (b) of this section do not prohibit a State 
from continuing in force, or from enacting, a law, regulation, 
or order requiring the removal of obstructive vegetation from a 
railroad right-of-way for safety reasons that is more stringent 
than the requirements of the regulations prescribed pursuant to 
this section.
  (d) Model Legislation.--Not later than 18 months after the 
date of enactment of the Federal Railroad Safety Improvement 
Act of 2007, the Secretary, after consultation with the Federal 
Railroad Safety Administration, the Federal Highway 
Administration, and States, shall develop and make available to 
States model legislation providing for improving safety by 
addressing sight obstructions, at highway-rail grade crossings 
that are equipped solely with passive warnings, such as 
permanent structures, temporary structures, and standing 
railroad equipment, as recommended by the Inspector General of 
the Department of Transportation in Report No. MH-2007-044.

Sec. 20157. National crossing inventory

  (a) Initial Reporting of Information about Previously 
Unreported Crossings.--Not later than 1 year after the date of 
enactment of the Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 
2007 or 6 months after a new crossing becomes operational, 
whichever occurs later, each railroad carrier shall--
          (1) report to the Secretary of Transportation current 
        information, including information about warning 
        devices and signage, as specified by the Secretary, 
        concerning each previously unreported crossing through 
        which it operates; or
          (2) ensure that the information has been reported to 
        the Secretary by another railroad carrier that operates 
        through the crossing.
  (b) Updating of Crossing Information.--(1) On a periodic 
basis beginning not later than 3 years after the date of 
enactment of the Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 
2007 and on or before September 30 of every third year 
thereafter, or as otherwise specified by the Secretary, each 
railroad carrier shall--
          (A) report to the Secretary current information, 
        including information about warning devices and 
        signage, as specified by the Secretary, concerning each 
        crossing through which it operates; or
          (B) ensure that the information has been reported to 
        the Secretary by another railroad carrier that operates 
        through the crossing.
  (2) A railroad carrier that sells a crossing or any part of a 
crossing on or after the date of enactment of the Federal 
Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007 shall, not later than 
the date that is 18 months after the date of enactment of that 
Act or 3 months after the sale, whichever occurs later, or as 
otherwise specified by the Secretary, report to the Secretary 
current information, as specified by the Secretary, concerning 
the change in ownership of the crossing or part of the 
crossing.
  (c) Rulemaking Authority.--The Secretary shall prescribe the 
regulations necessary to implement this section. The Secretary 
may enforce each provision of the Department of 
Transportation's statement of the national highway-rail 
crossing inventory policy, procedures, and instruction for 
States and railroads that is in effect on the date of enactment 
of the Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007, until 
such provision is superseded by a regulation issued under this 
section.
  (d) Definitions.--In this section:
          (1) Crossing.--The term ``crossing'' means a location 
        within a State, other than a location where one or more 
        railroad tracks cross one or more railroad tracks 
        either at grade or grade-separated, where--
                  (A) a public highway, road, or street, or a 
                private roadway, including associated sidewalks 
                and pathways, crosses one or more railroad 
                tracks either at grade or grade-separated; or
                  (B) a pathway dedicated for the use of 
                nonvehicular traffic, including pedestrians, 
                bicyclists, and others, that is not associated 
                with a public highway, road, or street, or a 
                private roadway, crosses one or more railroad 
                tracks either at grade or grade-separated.
          (2) State.--The term ``State'' means a State of the 
        United States, the District of Columbia, or the 
        Commonwealth of Puerto Rico.

Sec. 20158. Warning in nonsignaled territory

  Not later than 12 months after the date of enactment of the 
Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007, the Secretary 
of Transportation shall prescribe regulations that require 
railroads, with respect to main lines in nonsignaled territory 
without a train speed enforcement system that would stop a 
train in advance of a misaligned switch, to either--
          (1) install an automatically activated device, in 
        addition to the switch banner, that will, visually or 
        electronically, compellingly capture the attention of 
        the employees involved with switch operations and 
        clearly convey the status of the switch both in 
        daylight and darkness; or
          (2) operate trains at speeds that will allow them to 
        be safely stopped in advance of misaligned switches.

Sec. 20159. Track safety

  (a) Rail Integrity.--Not later than 12 months after the date 
of enactment of the Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 
2007, the Secretary of Transportation shall prescribe 
regulations to require railroad carriers to manage the rail in 
their tracks so as to minimize accidents due to internal rail 
flaws. The regulations shall, at a minimum--
          (1) require railroad carriers to conduct ultrasonic 
        or other appropriate inspections to ensure that rail 
        used to replace defective segments of existing rail is 
        free from internal defects;
          (2) require railroad carriers to perform rail 
        integrity inspections to manage an annual service 
        failure rate of less than .1 per track mile on high-
        risk corridors such as those that have significant 
        movements of hazardous materials or where commuter and 
        intercity passenger railroads operate; and
          (3) encourage railroad carrier use of advanced rail 
        defect inspection equipment and similar technologies as 
        part of a comprehensive rail inspection program.
  (b) Concrete Crossties.--Not later than 18 months after the 
date of enactment of the Federal Railroad Safety Improvement 
Act of 2007, the Secretary shall develop and implement 
regulations for all classes of track for concrete crossties 
that address, at a minimum--
          (1) limits for rail seat abrasion;
          (2) concrete crosstie pad wear limits;
          (3) missing or broken rail fasteners;
          (4) loss of appropriate toeload pressure;
          (5) improper fastener configurations; and
          (6) excessive lateral rail movement.

Sec. 20160. Certification of conductors

  (a) Regulations.--Not later than 18 months after the date of 
enactment of the Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 
2007, the Secretary of Transportation shall prescribe 
regulations and issue orders to establish a program requiring 
the certification of train conductors. In prescribing such 
regulations, the Secretary shall require that conductors on 
passenger trains be trained in security, first aid, and 
emergency preparedness.
  (b) Program Design.--The program established under this 
section shall be designed based on the requirements of section 
20135(b) through (e).

Sec. 20161. Minimum training standards

  The Secretary of Transportation shall, not later than 180 
days after the date of enactment of the Federal Railroad Safety 
Improvement Act of 2007, establish--
          (1) minimum training standards for each class and 
        craft of railroad employees, which shall require 
        railroad carriers to qualify or otherwise document the 
        proficiency of their employees in each class and craft 
        regarding their knowledge of, and ability to comply 
        with, Federal railroad safety laws and regulations and 
        railroad carrier rules and procedures promulgated to 
        implement those Federal railroad safety laws and 
        regulations;
          (2) a requirement for railroad carriers to submit 
        their training and qualification programs to the 
        Federal Railroad Safety Administration for approval; 
        and
          (3) a minimum training curriculum, and ongoing 
        training criteria, testing, and skills evaluation 
        measures to ensure that railroad employees charged with 
        the inspection of track or railroad equipment are 
        qualified to assess railroad compliance with Federal 
        standards to identify defective conditions and initiate 
        immediate remedial action to correct critical safety 
        defects that are known to contribute to derailments, 
        accidents, or injury. In implementing the requirements 
        of this paragraph, the Secretary shall take into 
        consideration existing training programs of railroad 
        carriers.

Sec. 20162. Prompt medical attention

  (a) Prohibition.--A railroad or person covered under this 
title shall not deny, delay, or interfere with the medical or 
first aid treatment of an employee who is injured during the 
course of employment. If transportation to a hospital is 
requested by an employee who is injured during the course of 
employment, the railroad shall promptly arrange to have the 
injured employee transported to the nearest medically 
appropriate hospital.
  (b) Discipline.--A railroad or person covered under this 
title shall not discipline, or threaten discipline to, an 
employee for requesting medical or first aid treatment, or for 
following orders or a treatment plan of a treating physician. 
For purposes of this subsection, discipline means to bring 
charges against a person in a disciplinary proceeding, suspend, 
terminate, place on probation, or make note of reprimand on an 
employee's record.

Sec. 20163. Emergency escape breathing apparatus

  Not later than 18 months after the date of enactment of the 
Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007, the Secretary 
of Transportation shall prescribe regulations that require 
railroads to--
          (1) provide emergency escape breathing apparatus for 
        all crewmembers on freight trains carrying hazardous 
        materials that would pose an inhalation hazard in the 
        event of release; and
          (2) provide their crewmembers with appropriate 
        training for using the breathing apparatus.

Sec. 20164. Certification of carmen

  (a) Regulations.--Not later than 18 months after the date of 
enactment of the Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 
2007, the Secretary of Transportation shall prescribe 
regulations and issue orders to establish a program requiring 
the certification of carmen, including all employees performing 
mechanical inspections, brake system inspections, or 
maintenance on freight and passenger rail cars.
  (b) Program Design.--The program established under this 
section shall be designed by the Secretary of Transportation 
based on the requirements of parts 215, 221, 231, 232, and 238 
of title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations.

Sec. 20165. Fostering introduction of new technology to improve safety 
                    at highway-rail grade crossings

  (a) Findings.--(1) Collisions between highway users and 
trains at highway-rail grade crossings continue to cause an 
unacceptable loss of life and serious personal injury and also 
threaten the safety of rail transportation.
  (2) While elimination of at-grade crossings through 
consolidation of crossings and grade separations offers the 
greatest long-term promise for optimizing the safety and 
efficiency of the two modes of transportation, over 140,000 
public grade crossings remain on the general rail system--
approximately one for each route mile on the general rail 
system.
  (3) Conventional highway traffic control devices such as 
flashing lights and gates are effective in warning motorists of 
a train's approach to an equipped crossing.
  (4) Since enactment of the Highway Safety Act of 1973, over 
$4,200,000,000 of Federal funding has been invested in safety 
improvements at highway-rail grade crossings, yet a majority of 
public highway-rail grade crossings are not yet equipped with 
active warning systems.
  (5) The emergence of new technologies supporting Intelligent 
Transportation Systems presents opportunities for more 
effective and affordable warnings and safer passage of highway 
users and trains at remaining highway-rail grade crossings.
  (6) Implementation of new crossing safety technology will 
require extensive cooperation between highway authorities and 
railroad carriers.
  (7) Federal Railroad Safety Administration regulations 
establishing performance standards for processor-based signal 
and train control systems provide a suitable framework for 
qualification of new or novel technology at highway-rail grade 
crossings, and the Federal Highway Administration's Manual on 
Uniform Traffic Control Devices provides an appropriate means 
of determining highway user interface with such new technology.
  (b) Policy.--It is the policy of the United States to 
encourage the development of new technology that can prevent 
loss of life and injuries at highway-rail grade crossings. The 
Secretary of Transportation is designated to carry out this 
policy in consultation with States and necessary public and 
private entities.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


                     CHAPTER 211--HOURS OF SERVICE

Sec
21101.  Definitions.
     * * * * * * *
21109.  Fatigue management plans.
21110.  Regulatory authority.
     * * * * * * *

Sec. 21101. Definitions

   In this chapter--
          (1)  * * *

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

          (4) ``signal employee'' means an individual [employed 
        by a railroad carrier] who is engaged in installing, 
        repairing, or maintaining signal systems.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 21103. Limitations on duty hours of train employees

  [(a) General.--Except as provided in subsection (c) of this 
section, a railroad carrier and its officers and agents may not 
require or allow a train employee to remain or go on duty--
          [(1) unless that employee has had at least 8 
        consecutive hours off duty during the prior 24 hours; 
        or
          [(2) after that employee has been on duty for 12 
        consecutive hours, until that employee has had at least 
        10 consecutive hours off duty.]
  (a) General.--Except as provided in subsection (c) of this 
section, a railroad carrier and its officers and agents may not 
require or allow a train employee to remain or go on duty--
          (1) unless that employee has had at least 10 
        consecutive hours off duty during the prior 24 hours;
          (2) for a period in excess of 12 consecutive hours; 
        or
          (3) unless that employee has had at least one period 
        of at least 24 consecutive hours off duty in the past 7 
        consecutive days.
The Secretary may waive paragraph (3) if a collective 
bargaining agreement provides a different arrangement and such 
arrangement provides an equivalent level of safety.
  (b) Determining Time on Duty.--In determining under 
subsection (a) of this section the time a train employee is on 
or off duty, the following rules apply:
          (1)  * * *

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

          [(4) Time spent in deadhead transportation to a duty 
        assignment is time on duty, but time spent in deadhead 
        transportation from a duty assignment to the place of 
        final release is neither time on duty nor time off 
        duty.]
          (4)(A)(i) Except as provided in clauses (ii) and 
        (iii), time spent in deadhead transportation to a duty 
        assignment, time spent waiting for deadhead 
        transportation, and time spent in deadhead 
        transportation from a duty assignment to a place of 
        final release is time on duty.
          (ii) Time spent waiting for deadhead transportation 
        and time spent in deadhead transportation from a duty 
        assignment to a place of final release is neither time 
        on duty nor time off duty in situations involving 
        delays in the operations of the railroad carrier, when 
        the delays were caused by any of the following:
                  (I) A casualty.
                  (II) An accident.
                  (III) A track obstruction.
                  (IV) An act of God.
                  (V) A weather event causing a delay.
                  (VI) A snowstorm.
                  (VII) A landslide.
                  (VIII) A track or bridge washout.
                  (IX) A derailment.
                  (X) A major equipment failure which prevents 
                a train from advancing.
                  (XI) Other delay from a cause unknown or 
                unforeseeable to a railroad carrier and its 
                officers and agents in charge of the employee 
                when the employee left a designated terminal.
          (iii) In addition to any time qualifying as neither 
        on duty nor off duty under clause (ii), at the election 
        of the railroad carrier, time spent waiting for 
        deadhead transportation and time spent in deadhead 
        transportation to the place of final release may be 
        treated as neither time on duty nor time off duty, 
        subject to the following limitations:
                  (I) Not more than 40 hours a month may be 
                elected by the railroad carrier, for an 
                employee, during the period from the date of 
                enactment of the Federal Railroad Safety 
                Improvement Act of 2007 to one year after such 
                date of enactment.
                  (II) Not more than 30 hours a month may be 
                elected by the railroad carrier, for an 
                employee, during the period beginning one year 
                after the date of enactment of the Federal 
                Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007 and 
                ending two years after such date of enactment.
                  (III) Not more than 10 hours a month may be 
                elected by the railroad carrier, for an 
                employee, during the period beginning two years 
                after the date of enactment of the Federal 
                Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007.
          (B) Each railroad carrier shall report to the 
        Secretary of Transportation, in accordance with 
        procedures contained in 49 CFR 228.19, each instance 
        within 30 days after the calendar month in which the 
        instance occurs that a member of a train or engine crew 
        or other employee engaged in or connected with the 
        movement of any train, including a hostler, exceeds 12 
        consecutive hours, including--
                  (i) time on duty; and
                  (ii) time spent waiting for deadhead 
                transportation and the time spent in deadhead 
                transportation from a duty assignment to the 
                place of final release, that is not time on 
                duty.
          (C) If--
                  (i) the time spent waiting for deadhead 
                transportation, and the time spent in deadhead 
                transportation from a duty assignment to the 
                place of final release, that is not time on 
                duty; plus
                  (ii) the time on duty,
        exceeds 12 consecutive hours, the railroad carrier and 
        its officers and agents shall provide the train 
        employee with additional time off duty equal to the 
        number of hours that such sum exceeds 12 hours.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

  (d) Communication During Time Off Duty.--During a train 
employee's minimum off-duty period of 10 consecutive hours, as 
provided under subsection (a), or during an interim period of 
at least 4 consecutive hours available for rest under 
subsection (b)(7), a railroad carrier, and its managers, 
supervisors, officers, and agents, shall not communicate with 
the train employee by telephone, by pager, or in any other 
manner that could disrupt the employee's rest. Nothing in this 
subsection shall prohibit communication necessary to notify an 
employee of an emergency situation posing potential risks to 
the employee's safety or health.

Sec. 21104. Limitations on duty hours of signal employees

  [(a) General.--(1) In paragraph (2)(C) of this subsection, 
``24-hour period'' means the period beginning when a signal 
employee reports for duty immediately after 8 consecutive hours 
off duty or, when required under paragraph (2)(B) of this 
subsection, after 10 consecutive hours off duty.
  [(2) Except as provided in subsection (c) of this section, a 
railroad carrier and its officers and agents may not require or 
allow a signal employee to remain or go on duty--
          [(A) unless that employee has had at least 8 
        consecutive hours off duty during the prior 24 hours;
          [(B) after that employee has been on duty for 12 
        consecutive hours, until that employee has had at least 
        10 consecutive hours off duty; or
          [(C) after that employee has been on duty a total of 
        12 hours during a 24-hour period, or after the end of 
        that 24-hour period, whichever occurs first, until that 
        employee has had at least 8 consecutive hours off 
        duty.]
  (a) General.--Except as provided in subsection (c) of this 
section, a railroad carrier and its officers and agents may not 
require or allow a signal employee, and a railroad contractor 
and its officers and agents may not require or allow a signal 
employee, to remain or go on duty--
          (1) unless that employee has had at least 10 
        consecutive hours off duty during the prior 24 hours;
          (2) for a period in excess of 12 consecutive hours; 
        or
          (3) unless that employee has had at least one period 
        of at least 24 consecutive hours off duty in the past 7 
        consecutive days.
The Secretary may waive paragraph (3) if a collective 
bargaining agreement provides a different arrangement and such 
arrangement provides an equivalent level of safety.
  (b) Determining Time on Duty.--In determining under 
subsection (a) of this section the time a signal employee is on 
duty or off duty, the following rules apply:
          (1)  * * *

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

          (3) Time spent returning from a trouble call, whether 
        the employee goes directly to the employee's residence 
        or by way of the employee's headquarters, is neither 
        time on duty nor time off duty[, except that up to one 
        hour of that time spent returning from the final 
        trouble call of a period of continuous or broken 
        service is time off duty].

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

  (c) Emergencies.--A signal employee may be allowed to remain 
or go on duty for not more than 4 additional hours in any 
period of 24 consecutive hours for not more than 3 days during 
a period of 7 consecutive days when an emergency exists and the 
work of that employee is related to the emergency. In this 
subsection, an emergency ends when the signal system is 
restored to service. A signal employee may not be allowed to 
remain or go on duty under the emergency authority provided 
under this subsection to conduct routine repairs, routine 
maintenance, or routine inspection of signal systems.
  (d) Communication During Time Off Duty.--During a signal 
employee's minimum off-duty period of 10 consecutive hours, as 
provided under subsection (a), a railroad carrier, and its 
managers, supervisors, officers, and agents, shall not 
communicate with the signal employee by telephone, by pager, or 
in any other manner that could disrupt the employee's rest. 
Nothing in this subsection shall prohibit communication 
necessary to notify an employee of an emergency situation 
posing potential risks to the employee's safety or health.
  (e) Exclusivity.--The hours of service, duty hours, and rest 
periods of signal employees shall be governed exclusively by 
this chapter. Signal employees operating motor vehicles shall 
not be subject to any hours of service rules, duty hours, or 
rest period rules promulgated by any Federal authority, 
including the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, 
other than the Federal Railroad Safety Administration.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 21106. Limitations on employee sleeping quarters

  (a) In General.--A railroad carrier and its officers and 
agents--
          (1) * * *

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

  (b) Camp Cars.--Effective 12 months after the date of 
enactment of this subsection, a railroad carrier and its 
officers and agents may not provide sleeping quarters through 
the use of camp cars, as defined in Appendix C to part 228 of 
title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations, for employees and 
any individuals employed to maintain the right of way of a 
railroad carrier.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 21109. Fatigue management plans

  (a) Plan Submission.--
          (1) Requirement.--Each railroad carrier shall submit 
        to the Secretary of Transportation, and update at least 
        once every 2 years, a fatigue management plan that is 
        designed to reduce the fatigue experienced by railroad 
        employees and to reduce the likelihood of accidents and 
        injuries caused by fatigue. The plan shall address the 
        safety effects of fatigue on all employees performing 
        safety sensitive functions, including employees not 
        covered by this chapter. The plan shall be submitted 
        not later than 1 year after the date of the enactment 
        of this section, or not later than 45 days prior to 
        commencing operations, whichever is later.
          (2) Contents of plan.--The fatigue management plan 
        shall--
                  (A) identify and prioritize all situations 
                that pose a risk for safety that may be 
                affected by fatigue;
                  (B) include the railroad carrier's--
                          (i) rationale for including and not 
                        including each element described in 
                        subsection (b)(2) in the plan;
                          (ii) analysis supporting each element 
                        included in the plan; and
                          (iii) explanations for how each 
                        element in the plan will reduce the 
                        risk associated with fatigue;
                  (C) describe how every condition on the 
                railroad carrier's property, and every type of 
                employee, that is likely to be affected by 
                fatigue is addressed in the plan; and
                  (D) include the name, title, address, and 
                telephone number of the primary person to be 
                contacted with regard to review of the plan.
          (3) Approval.--(A) The Secretary shall review each 
        proposed plan and approve or disapprove such plan based 
        on whether the requirements of this section are 
        sufficiently and appropriately addressed and the 
        proposals are adequately justified in the plan.
          (B) If the proposed plan is not approved, the 
        Secretary shall notify the affected railroad carrier as 
        to the specific points in which the proposed plan is 
        deficient, and the railroad carrier shall correct all 
        deficiencies within 30 days following receipt of 
        written notice from the Secretary. If a railroad 
        carrier does not submit a plan (or, when directed by 
        the Secretary, an amended plan), or if a railroad 
        carrier's amended plan is not approved by the 
        Secretary, the Secretary shall prescribe a fatigue 
        management plan for the railroad carrier.
          (4) Employee participation.--(A) Each affected 
        railroad carrier shall consult with, and employ good 
        faith and use its best efforts to reach agreement by 
        consensus with, all of its directly affected employee 
        groups on the contents of the fatigue management plan, 
        and, except as provided in subparagraph (C), shall 
        jointly with such groups submit the plan to the 
        Secretary.
          (B) In the event that labor organizations represent 
        classes or crafts of directly affected employees of the 
        railroad carrier, the railroad carrier shall consult 
        with these organizations in drafting the plan. The 
        Secretary may provide technical assistance and guidance 
        to such parties in the drafting of the plan.
          (C) If the railroad carrier and its directly affected 
        employees (including any labor organization 
        representing a class or craft of directly affected 
        employees of the railroad carrier) cannot reach 
        consensus on the proposed contents of the plan, then--
                  (i) the railroad carrier shall file the plan 
                with the Secretary; and
                  (ii) directly affected employees and labor 
                organizations representing a class or craft of 
                directly affected employees may, at their 
                option, file a statement with the Secretary 
                explaining their views on the plan on which 
                consensus was not reached.
  (b) Elements of the Fatigue Management Plan.--
          (1) Consideration of varying circumstances.--Each 
        plan filed with the Secretary under the procedures of 
        subsection (a) shall take into account the varying 
        circumstances of operations by the railroad carrier on 
        different parts of its system, and shall prescribe 
        appropriate fatigue countermeasures to address those 
        varying circumstances.
          (2) Issues affecting all employees performing safety 
        sensitive functions.--The railroad carrier shall 
        consider the need to include in its fatigue management 
        plan elements addressing each of the following issues:
                  (A) Education and training on the 
                physiological and human factors that affect 
                fatigue, as well as strategies to counter 
                fatigue, based on current and evolving 
                scientific and medical research and literature.
                  (B) Opportunities for identification, 
                diagnosis, and treatment of any medical 
                condition that may affect alertness or fatigue, 
                including sleep disorders.
                  (C) Effects on employee fatigue of emergency 
                response involving both short-term emergency 
                situations, including derailments, and long-
                term emergency situations, including natural 
                disasters.
                  (D) Scheduling practices involving train 
                lineups and calling times, including work/rest 
                cycles for shift workers and on-call employees 
                that permit employees to compensate for 
                cumulative sleep loss by guaranteeing a minimum 
                number of consecutive days off (exclusive of 
                time off due to illness or injury).
                  (E) Minimizing the incidence of fatigue that 
                occurs as a result of working at times when the 
                natural circadian rhythm increases fatigue.
                  (F) Alertness strategies, such as policies on 
                napping, to address acute sleepiness and 
                fatigue while an employee is on duty.
                  (G) Opportunities to obtain restful sleep at 
                lodging facilities, including sleeping quarters 
                provided by the railroad carrier.
                  (H) In connection with the scheduling of a 
                duty call, increasing the number of consecutive 
                hours of rest off duty, during which an 
                employee receives no communication from the 
                employing railroad carrier or its managers, 
                supervisors, officers, or agents.
                  (I) Avoiding abrupt changes in rest cycles 
                for employees returning to duty after an 
                extended absence due to circumstances such as 
                illness or injury.
                  (J) Additional elements as the Secretary 
                considers appropriate.
  (c) Compliance and Enforcement.--
          (1) Compliance requirement.--Effective upon approval 
        or prescription of a fatigue management plan, 
        compliance with that fatigue management plan becomes 
        mandatory and enforceable by the Secretary.
          (2) Effective date.--A fatigue management plan may 
        include effective dates later than the date of approval 
        of the plan, and may include different effective dates 
        for different parts of the plan.
          (3) Audits.--To enforce this section, the Secretary 
        may conduct inspections and periodic audits of a 
        railroad carrier's compliance with its fatigue 
        management plan.
  (d) Definition.--For purposes of this section the term 
``directly affected employees'' means employees, including 
employees of an independent contractor or subcontractor, to 
whose hours of service the terms of a fatigue management plan 
specifically apply.

Sec. 21110. Regulatory authority

  The Secretary of Transportation may by regulation--
          (1) reduce the maximum hours an employee may be 
        required or allowed to go or remain on duty to a level 
        less than the level established under this chapter, 
        based on scientific and medical research; or
          (2) increase the minimum hours an employee may be 
        required or allowed to rest to a level greater than the 
        level established under this chapter, based on 
        scientific and medical research.

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                         CHAPTER 213--PENALTIES

                      SUBCHAPTER I--CIVIL PENALTIES

Sec
21301.  Chapter 201 general violations.
     * * * * * * *

                    SUBCHAPTER II--CRIMINAL PENALTIES

     * * * * * * *
21312.  Interfering with or hampering safety investigations.
     * * * * * * *

                     SUBCHAPTER I--CIVIL PENALTIES

Sec. 21301. Chapter 201 general violations

  (a) Penalty.--(1) A person may not fail to comply with 
section 20157 or with a regulation prescribed or order issued 
by the Secretary of Transportation under chapter 201 of this 
title. Subject to section 21304 of this title, a person 
violating section 20157 of this title or a regulation 
prescribed or order issued by the Secretary under chapter 201 
is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty. 
The Secretary shall impose the penalty applicable under 
paragraph (2) of this subsection. A separate violation occurs 
for each day the violation continues.
  (2) The Secretary shall include in, or make applicable to, 
each regulation prescribed and order issued under chapter 201 
of this title a civil penalty for a violation. The Secretary 
shall impose a civil penalty for a violation of section 20157 
of this title. The amount of the penalty shall be at least $500 
but not more than [$10,000] $25,000. However, when a grossly 
negligent violation or a pattern of repeated violations has 
caused an imminent hazard of death or injury to individuals, or 
has caused death or injury, the amount may be not more than 
[$20,000] $100,000.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 21302. Chapter 201 accident and incident violations and chapter 
                    203-209 violations

  (a) Penalty.--(1)  * * *
  (2) The Secretary of Transportation imposes a civil penalty 
under this subsection. The amount of the penalty shall be at 
least $500 but not more than [$10,000] $25,000. However, when a 
grossly negligent violation or a pattern of repeated violations 
has caused an imminent hazard of death or injury to 
individuals, or has caused death or injury, the amount may be 
not more than [$20,000] $100,000.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 21303. Chapter 211 violations

  (a) Penalty.--(1)  * * *
  (2) The Secretary of Transportation imposes a civil penalty 
under this subsection. The amount of the penalty shall be at 
least $500 but not more than [$10,000] $25,000. However, when a 
grossly negligent violation or a pattern of repeated violations 
has caused an imminent hazard of death or injury to 
individuals, or has caused death or injury, the amount may be 
not more than [$20,000] $100,000.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

  (c) Imputation of Knowledge.--In any proceeding under this 
section, a railroad carrier is deemed to know the acts of its 
[officers and agents] managers, supervisors, officers, and 
agents.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


                   SUBCHAPTER II--CRIMINAL PENALTIES

Sec. 21311. Records and reports

  (a) * * *
  (b) Accident and Incident Reports.--A railroad carrier not 
filing the report required by section 20901 of this title shall 
be fined not more than [$500] $2,500 for each violation and not 
more than [$500] $2,500 for each day during which the report is 
overdue.

Sec. 21312. Interfering with or hampering safety investigations

  (a) In General.--It shall be unlawful for any person 
knowingly to interfere with, obstruct, or hamper an 
investigation by the Secretary of Transportation conducted 
under section 20703 or 20902 of this title, or a railroad 
investigation by the National Transportation Safety Board under 
chapter 11 of this title.
  (b) Intimidation and Harassment.--It shall be unlawful for 
any person, with regard to an investigation conducted by the 
Secretary under section 20703 or 20902 of this title, or a 
railroad investigation by the National Transportation Safety 
Board under chapter 11 of this title, knowingly or 
intentionally to use intimidation, harassment, threats, or 
physical force toward another person, or corruptly persuade 
another person, or attempt to do so, or engage in misleading 
conduct toward another person, with the intent or effect of--
          (1) influencing the testimony or statement of any 
        person;
          (2) hindering, delaying, preventing, or dissuading 
        any person from--
                  (A) attending a proceeding or interview with, 
                testifying before, or providing a written 
                statement to, a National Transportation Safety 
                Board railroad investigator, a Federal railroad 
                safety inspector or State railroad safety 
                inspector, or their superiors;
                  (B) communicating or reporting to a National 
                Transportation Safety Board railroad 
                investigator, a Federal railroad safety 
                inspector, or a State railroad safety 
                inspector, or their superiors, information 
                relating to the commission or possible 
                commission of one or more violations of this 
                part or of chapter 51 of this title; or
                  (C) recommending or using any legal remedy 
                available to the Secretary under this title; or
          (3) causing or inducing any person to--
                  (A) withhold testimony, or a statement, 
                record, document, or other object, from the 
                investigation;
                  (B) alter, destroy, mutilate, or conceal a 
                statement, record, document, or other object 
                with intent to impair the integrity or 
                availability of the statement, record, 
                document, or other object for use in the 
                investigation;
                  (C) evade legal process summoning that person 
                to appear as a witness, or to produce a 
                statement, record, document, or other object, 
                in the investigation; or
                  (D) be absent from an investigation to which 
                such person has been summoned by legal process.
  (c) Elements of Violation.--(1) For the purposes of this 
section, the testimony or statement, or the record, document, 
or other object, need not be admissible in evidence or free 
from a claim of privilege.
  (2) In a prosecution for an offense under this section, no 
state of mind need be proved with respect to the circumstance 
that the investigation is being conducted by the Secretary 
under section 20703 or 20902 of this title or by the National 
Transportation Safety Board under chapter 11 of this title.
  (d) Criminal Penalties.--A person violating this section 
shall be fined under title 18, imprisoned for not more than 1 
year, or both.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


PART C--PASSENGER TRANSPORTATION

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


                     CHAPTER 251--FAMILY ASSISTANCE

Sec.
25101. Plans to address needs of families of passengers involved in rail 
          passenger accidents.

Sec. 25101. Plans to address needs of families of passengers involved 
                    in rail passenger accidents

  (a) Submission of Plans.--Not later than 6 months after the 
date of the enactment of this section, each rail passenger 
carrier shall submit to the Secretary of Transportation and the 
Chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board a plan for 
addressing the needs of the families of passengers involved in 
any rail passenger accident involving a train of the rail 
passenger carrier and resulting in a major loss of life.
  (b) Contents of Plans.--A plan to be submitted by a rail 
passenger carrier under subsection (a) shall include, at a 
minimum, the following:
          (1) A plan for publicizing a reliable, toll-free 
        telephone number, and for providing staff, to handle 
        calls from the families of the passengers.
          (2) A process for notifying the families of the 
        passengers, before providing any public notice of the 
        names of the passengers, either by utilizing the 
        services of the organization designated for the 
        accident under section 1139(a)(2) of this title or the 
        services of other suitably trained individuals.
          (3) An assurance that the notice described in 
        paragraph (2) will be provided to the family of a 
        passenger as soon as the rail passenger carrier has 
        verified that the passenger was aboard the train 
        (whether or not the names of all of the passengers have 
        been verified) and, to the extent practicable, in 
        person.
          (4) An assurance that the rail passenger carrier will 
        provide to the director of family support services 
        designated for the accident under section 1139(a)(1) of 
        this title, and to the organization designated for the 
        accident under section 1139(a)(2) of this title, 
        immediately upon request, a list (which is based on the 
        best available information at the time of the request) 
        of the names of the passengers aboard the train 
        (whether or not such names have been verified), and 
        will periodically update the list. The plan shall 
        include a procedure, with respect to unreserved trains 
        and passengers not holding reservations on other 
        trains, for the rail passenger carrier to use 
        reasonable efforts to ascertain the names of passengers 
        aboard a train involved in an accident.
          (5) An assurance that the family of each passenger 
        will be consulted about the disposition of all remains 
        and personal effects of the passenger within the 
        control of the rail passenger carrier.
          (6) An assurance that if requested by the family of a 
        passenger, any possession of the passenger within the 
        control of the rail passenger carrier (regardless of 
        its condition) will be returned to the family unless 
        the possession is needed for the accident investigation 
        or any criminal investigation.
          (7) An assurance that any unclaimed possession of a 
        passenger within the control of the rail passenger 
        carrier will be retained by the rail passenger carrier 
        for at least 18 months.
          (8) An assurance that the family of each passenger or 
        other person killed in the accident will be consulted 
        about construction by the rail passenger carrier of any 
        monument to the passengers, including any inscription 
        on the monument.
          (9) An assurance that the treatment of the families 
        of nonrevenue passengers will be the same as the 
        treatment of the families of revenue passengers.
          (10) An assurance that the rail passenger carrier 
        will work with any organization designated under 
        section 1139(a)(2) of this title on an ongoing basis to 
        ensure that families of passengers receive an 
        appropriate level of services and assistance following 
        each accident.
          (11) An assurance that the rail passenger carrier 
        will provide reasonable compensation to any 
        organization designated under section 1139(a)(2) of 
        this title for services provided by the organization.
          (12) An assurance that the rail passenger carrier 
        will assist the family of a passenger in traveling to 
        the location of the accident and provide for the 
        physical care of the family while the family is staying 
        at such location.
          (13) An assurance that the rail passenger carrier 
        will commit sufficient resources to carry out the plan.
          (14) An assurance that the rail passenger carrier 
        will provide adequate training to the employees and 
        agents of the carrier to meet the needs of survivors 
        and family members following an accident.
          (15) An assurance that, upon request of the family of 
        a passenger, the rail passenger carrier will inform the 
        family of whether the passenger's name appeared on any 
        preliminary passenger manifest for the train involved 
        in the accident.
  (c) Limitation on Liability.--A rail passenger carrier shall 
not be liable for damages in any action brought in a Federal or 
State court arising out of the performance of the rail 
passenger carrier in preparing or providing a passenger list, 
or in providing information concerning a train reservation, 
pursuant to a plan submitted by the rail passenger carrier 
under subsection (b), unless such liability was caused by 
conduct of the rail passenger carrier which was grossly 
negligent or which constituted intentional misconduct.
  (d) Definitions.--In this section--
          (1) the terms ``rail passenger accident'' and ``rail 
        passenger carrier'' have the meanings such terms have 
        in section 1139 of this title; and
          (2) the term ``passenger'' means a person aboard a 
        rail passenger carrier's train that is involved in a 
        rail passenger accident.
  (e) Limitation on Statutory Construction.--Nothing in this 
section may be construed as limiting the actions that a rail 
passenger carrier may take, or the obligations that a rail 
passenger carrier may have, in providing assistance to the 
families of passengers involved in a rail passenger accident.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


PART E--MISCELLANEOUS

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


CHAPTER 281--LAW ENFORCEMENT

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 28101. Rail police officers

   Under regulations prescribed by the Secretary of 
Transportation, a rail police officer who is employed by a rail 
carrier and certified or commissioned as a police officer under 
the laws of a State may enforce the laws of any jurisdiction in 
which [the rail carrier] any rail carrier owns property, to the 
extent of the authority of a police officer certified or 
commissioned under the laws of that jurisdiction, to protect--
          (1) employees, passengers, or patrons of [the rail 
        carrier] any rail carrier;
          (2) property, equipment, and facilities owned, 
        leased, operated, or maintained by [the rail carrier] 
        any rail carrier;
          (3) property moving in interstate or foreign commerce 
        in the possession of [the rail carrier] any rail 
        carrier; and

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

                              ----------                              


TITLE 23, UNITED STATES CODE

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


CHAPTER 1--FEDERAL-AID HIGHWAYS

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


SUBCHAPTER I--REPEALED

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 130. Railway-highway crossings

  (a) * * *

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

  (l) National Crossing Inventory.--
          (1) Initial reporting of crossing information.--Not 
        later than 1 year after the date of enactment of the 
        Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007 or 
        within 6 months of a new crossing becoming operational, 
        whichever occurs later, each State shall report to the 
        Secretary of Transportation current information, 
        including information about warning devices and 
        signage, as specified by the Secretary, concerning each 
        previously unreported crossing located within its 
        borders.
          (2) Periodic updating of crossing information.--On a 
        periodic basis beginning not later than 3 years after 
        the date of enactment of the Federal Railroad Safety 
        Improvement Act of 2007 and on or before September 30 
        of every third year thereafter, or as otherwise 
        specified by the Secretary, each State shall report to 
        the Secretary current information, including 
        information about warning devices and signage, as 
        specified by the Secretary, concerning each crossing 
        located within its borders.
          (3) Rulemaking authority.--The Secretary shall 
        prescribe the regulations necessary to implement this 
        subsection. The Secretary may enforce each provision of 
        the Department of Transportation's statement of the 
        national highway-rail crossing inventory policy, 
        procedures, and instructions for States and railroads 
        that is in effect on the date of enactment of the 
        Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007, until 
        such provision is superseded by a regulation issued 
        under this subsection.
          (4) Definitions.--In this subsection, the terms 
        ``crossing'' and ``State'' have the meaning given those 
        terms by section 20157(d)(1) and (2), respectively, of 
        title 49.

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