Title 49

SECTION 299.325

299.325 Continuous welded rail (CWR); general.

§ 299.325 Continuous welded rail (CWR); general.

The railroad shall comply with the contents of the CWR plan developed under § 299.323. The plan shall contain the following elements -

(a) Procedures for the installation and adjustment of CWR which include -

(1) Designation of a desired rail installation temperature range for the geographic area in which the CWR is located;

(2) De-stressing procedures/methods which address proper attainment of the desired rail installation temperature range when adjusting CWR; and

(3) Glued insulated or expansion joint installation and maintenance procedures.

(b) Rail anchoring, if used, or fastening requirements that will provide sufficient restraint to limit longitudinal rail and crosstie movement to the extent practical, and that specifically address CWR rail anchoring or fastening patterns on bridges, bridge approaches, and at other locations where possible longitudinal rail and crosstie movement associated with normally expected trainset-induced forces - is restricted.

(c) CWR joint installation and maintenance procedures.

(d) Procedures which specifically address maintaining a desired rail installation temperature range when cutting CWR including rail repairs, in-track welding, and in conjunction with adjustments made in the area of tight track, a track buckle, or a pull-apart.

(e) Procedures which control trainset speed on CWR track when -

(1) Maintenance work, track rehabilitation, track construction, or any other event occurs which disturbs the roadbed or ballast section and reduces the lateral or longitudinal resistance of the track; and

(2) The difference between the rail temperature and the rail neutral temperature is in a range that causes buckling-prone conditions to be present at a specific location.

(f) Procedures which prescribe when and where physical track inspections are to be performed under extreme temperature conditions.

(g) Scheduling and procedures for inspections to detect cracks and other indications of potential failures in CWR joints.

(h) The railroad shall have in effect a comprehensive training program for the application of these written CWR procedures, with provisions for periodic retraining for those individuals designated as qualified in accordance with this subpart to supervise the installation, adjustment, and maintenance of CWR track and to perform inspections of CWR track.

(i) The plan shall prescribe and require compliance with recordkeeping requirements necessary to provide an adequate history of track constructed with CWR. At a minimum, these records shall include -

(1) The rail laying temperature, location, and date of CWR installations. Each record shall be retained until the rail neutral temperature has been adjusted; and

(2) A record of any CWR installation or maintenance work that does not conform to the written procedures. Such record must include the location of the rail and be maintained until the CWR is brought into conformance with such procedures.