Title 49 Part 238 → Subpart E → §238.429
Title 49 → Subtitle B → Chapter II → Part 238 → Subpart E → §238.429
Electronic Code of Federal Regulations e-CFR
Title 49 Part 238 → Subpart E → §238.429
§238.429 Safety appliances.
(a) Couplers. (1) The leading and the trailing ends of a semi-permanently coupled trainset shall each be equipped with an automatic coupler that couples on impact and uncouples by either activation of a traditional uncoupling lever or some other type of uncoupling mechanism that does not require a person to go between the equipment units.
(2) The automatic coupler and uncoupling device on the leading and trailing ends of a semi-permanently coupled trainset may be stored within a removable shrouded housing.
(3) If the units in a train are not semi-permanently coupled, both ends of each unit shall be equipped with an automatic coupler that couples on impact and uncouples by either activation of a traditional uncoupling lever or some other type of uncoupling mechanism that does not require a person to go between the equipment units.
(b) Hand brakes. Except as provided in paragraph (f) of this section, Tier II trains shall be equipped with a parking or hand brake that can be applied and released manually and that is capable of holding the train on a 3-percent grade.
(c) Safety appliance mechanical strength and fasteners. (1) All handrails, handholds, and sill steps shall be made of 1-inch diameter steel pipe, 5⁄8 -inch thickness steel, or a material of equal or greater mechanical strength.
(2) All safety appliances shall be securely fastened to the car body structure with mechanical fasteners that have mechanical strength greater than or equal to that of a 1⁄2 -inch diameter SAE grade steel bolt mechanical fastener.
(i) Safety appliance mechanical fasteners shall have mechanical strength and fatigue resistance equal to or greater than a 1⁄2 -inch diameter SAE steel bolt.
(ii) Mechanical fasteners shall be installed with a positive means to prevent unauthorized removal. Self-locking threaded fasteners do not meet this requirement.
(iii) Mechanical fasteners shall be installed to facilitate inspection.
(d) Handrails and handholds. Except as provided in paragraph (f) of this section:
(1) Handrails shall be provided for passengers on both sides of all steps used to board or depart the train.
(2) Exits on a power vehicle shall be equipped with handrails and handholds so that crewmembers can get on and off the vehicle safely.
(3) Throughout their entire length, handrails and handholds shall be a color that contrasts with the color of the vehicle body to which they are fastened.
(4) The maximum distance above the top of the rail to the bottom of vertical handrails and handholds shall be 51 inches, and the minimum distance shall be 21 inches.
(5) Vertical handrails and handholds shall be installed to continue to a point at least equal to the height of the top edge of the control cab door.
(6) The minimum hand clearance distance between a vertical handrail or handhold and the vehicle body shall be 21⁄2 inches for the entire length.
(7) All vertical handrails and handholds shall be securely fastened to the vehicle body.
(8) If the length of the handrail exceeds 60 inches, it shall be securely fastened to the power vehicle body with two fasteners at each end.
(e) Sill steps. Except as provided in paragraph (f) of this section, each power vehicle shall be equipped with a sill step below each exterior door as follows:
(1) The sill step shall have a minimum cross-sectional area of 1⁄2 by 3 inches;
(2) The sill step shall be made of steel or a material of equal or greater strength and fatigue resistance;
(3) The minimum tread length of the sill step shall be 10 inches;
(4) The minimum clear depth of the sill step shall be 8 inches;
(5) The outside edge of the tread of the sill step shall be flush with the side of the car body structure;
(6) Sill steps shall not have a vertical rise between treads exceeding 18 inches;
(7) The lowest sill step tread shall be not more than 24, preferably not more than 22, inches above the top of the track rail;
(8) Sill steps shall be a color that contrasts with the color of the power vehicle body to which they are fastened;
(9) Sill steps shall be securely fastened;
(10) At least 50 percent of the tread surface area of each sill step shall be open space; and
(11) The portion of the tread surface area of each sill step which is not open space and is normally contacted by the foot shall be treated with an anti-skid material.
(f) Exceptions. (1) If the units of the equipment are semi-permanently coupled, with uncoupling done only at maintenance facilities, the equipment units that are not required by paragraph (a) of this section to be equipped with automatic couplers need not be equipped with sill steps or end or side handholds that would normally be used to safely perform coupling and uncoupling operations.
(2) If the units of the equipment are not semi-permanently coupled, the units shall be equipped with hand brakes, sill steps, end handholds, and side handholds that meet the requirements contained in §231.14 of this chapter.
(3) If two trainsets are coupled to form a single train that is not semi-permanently coupled (i.e., that is coupled by an automatic coupler), the automatically coupled ends shall be equipped with an end handhold that is located and installed so that an individual can safely couple and uncouple the trainsets. The end handhold shall be not more than 16 inches from each side of the car and shall extend the remaining length of the end of the car. (If the equipment is designed with a tapered nose, the side of the car shall be determined based on the outer dimension of the tapered nose where the end handhold is attached.) The end handhold shall also meet the mechanical strength and design requirements contained in paragraphs (c), (d)(3), and (d)(6) of this section. If the trainsets are semi-permanently coupled, this safety appliance is not required.
(g) Optional safety appliances. Safety appliances installed at the option of the railroad shall be firmly attached with mechanical fasteners and shall meet the design and installation requirements provided in this section.
[64 FR 25660, May 12, 1999, as amended at 67 FR 19992, Apr. 23, 2002]