299.713 Program approval procedure.§ 299.713 Program approval procedure.
(a) Submission. Except as provided in § 299.445(a)(2), the railroad shall submit for approval an inspection, testing, and maintenance program as described in § 299.711(b) not less than 180 days prior to pre-revenue service system integration testing. The program shall be submitted to FRA in accordance with § 299.9. If the railroad seeks to amend an approved program as described in § 299.711(b), the railroad shall file with FRA in accordance with § 299.9 for approval of such amendment not less than 60 days prior to the proposed effective date of the amendment. A program responsive to the requirements of this subpart or any amendment to the program shall not be implemented prior to FRA approval.
(b) Contents. Each program or amendment shall contain:
(1) The information prescribed in § 299.701 for such program or amendment; and
(2) The name, title, address, and telephone number of the primary person to be contacted with regard to review of the program, its content, or amendments.
(c) Approval. (1) Within 90 days of receipt of the initial inspection, testing, and maintenance program, FRA will review the program. The Associate Administrator will notify the primary railroad contact person in writing whether the inspection, testing, and maintenance program is approved and, if not approved, the specific points in which the program is deficient. Deficiencies identified shall be addressed as directed by FRA prior to implementing the program.
(2) FRA will review each proposed amendment to the program that relaxes an FRA-approved requirement within 45 days of receipt. The Associate Administrator will then notify the primary railroad contact person in writing whether the proposed amendment has been approved by FRA and, if not approved, the specific points in which the proposed amendment is deficient. The railroad shall correct any deficiencies as directed by FRA prior to implementing the amendment. For amendments proposing to make an FRA-approved program requirement more stringent, the railroad is permitted to implement the amendment prior to obtaining FRA approval.
(3) Following initial approval of a program or amendment, FRA may reopen consideration of the program or amendment for cause stated.
(4) The railroad may, subject to FRA review and approval under § 299.15, implement inspection, testing, maintenance procedures and criteria, incorporating new or emerging technology.