The Short Line Safety Institute’s materials cover a range of topics related to Safety Culture and HazMat. Browse our Safety Tips below for guidance on how to improve safety at your railroad.


Being able to quickly identify information about a car and its contents can minimize and even mitigate risks associated with a hazardous materials incident. This Hazmat Safety Tip is the first of two in the series, and identifies the reporting marks and information that can be found on the outside of a tank car.

Check out this safety tip to learn more about tank cars.

Watch a Hazmat Minute Video on this topic by clicking here.

 

Core Element 6: Personal Responsibility for Safety

SLSI has adopted the 10 Core Elements of a strong safety culture. Element 6 discusses the importance of employees taking personal responsibility for safety, and this month’s tip offers steps employees can take to become leaders in safety.

Check out this safety tip to learn more about personal responsibility as it relates to Core Element 6.

 

Safety Culture Core Element 10: Safety Training

SLSI has adopted the U.S. Department of Transportation Safety Council’s definition of a strong safety culture, which utilizes 10 Core Elements. Element 10 covers training and resources to support safety, and effective railroad training programs encompass certain steps.

Check out this safety tip to learn more about safety training as it relates to Core Element 10.

 

Accidents and injuries can occur not only in the yard or while operating vehicles, but also in employees’ workspaces. Utilizing good housekeeping practices can help prevent injuries and lead to improvements in morale and productivity.

Check out this safety tip to learn more about maintaining safe workplaces through good housekeeping.

Hazardous materials response training for volunteer or remote emergency responders should include an introduction to essential railroad terminology relating to the transportation of hazmat.

Check out this hazmat safety tip to learn more about key railroad terminology to introduce in emergency responder training.

Watch a Hazmat Minute Video on this topic by clicking here.

Knowing about switches, derails and clearance points and best practices for operating and using them is crucial for team member safety.

Check out this safety tip to learn more about switches, derails and clearance points and how to work with and around them properly.

Good preparation is essential to personal safety when preparing for outdoor work during the winter.

Check out this safety tip to learn more about frostbite and hypothermia and how to prepare for work during cold weather to help reduce the risk of these conditions.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) ensures safe and healthful working conditions for workers by setting and enforcing standards and by providing training, outreach, education and assistance. OSHA standards are rules that describe the methods that employers must use to protect their employees from hazards.

Check out this hazmat safety tip to learn more about OSHA standards and the ten that are most frequently cited, all of which fall into the general industry and construction groups.

Watch a Hazmat Minute Video on this topic by clicking here.

The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) has the authority to issue one-time movement approvals (OTMA) for bulk packages/packaging that no longer conform to the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR; Title 49 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Parts 171-180).

Check out this hazmat safety tip to learn more about OTMAs and how the process works.

Watch a Hazmat Minute Video on this topic by clicking here.

Blue signal usage is covered under CFR 49, part 218, and should be employed when any employee or contractor is engaged in the inspection, testing, repair, and servicing of rolling equipment whose activities require them to work on, under, or between such equipment and subjects them to the danger of personal injury posed by any movement of such equipment.

Check out this safety tip to learn more about the requirements for placement of a blue signal, and review securing a track using a locking device or a derail.

Watch a Safety Minute Video on this topic by clicking here.

Routinely reviewing protocol for hazardous materials releases is a great topic for safety briefings. Check out this hazmat safety tip to learn more about non-accidental releases (NARs) and necessary response actions to take when they occur.

Watch a HazMat Minute Video on this topic by clicking here.

While not inherently dangerous, the rail environment contains a unique infrastructure and moving equipment. It’s better to know before you go when responding to calls for service on railroad property. Check out this hazmat safety tip to learn more.

Watch a HazMat Minute Video on this topic by clicking here.

Conduct job safety briefings to ensure employees are aware of the occupational health and safety risks associated with the job that they perform. Check out this safety tip to learn more.

Watch a Safety Minute Video on this topic by clicking here.

“D.E.C.I.D.E.” is a process framework for hazardous materials emergency decision making. Check out this hazmat safety tip to learn more.

Watch a HazMat Minute Video on this topic by clicking here.

Check out this safety tip to learn more about fostering mutual trust between employees and the railroad.

Watch a Safety Minute Video on this topic by clicking here.

Fact-gathering endeavors during a hazardous materials emergency response should focus on: train, surroundings, and coordination. Check out this hazmat safety tip to learn more.

Watch a HazMat Minute Video on this topic by clicking here.

Check out this safety tip to learn more about Practical Drift Management.

Watch a Safety Minute Video on this topic by clicking here.

Three clear priorities exist during a hazardous materials emergency response. Check out this hazmat safety tip to learn more.

Watch a HazMat Minute Video on this topic by clicking here.

Use this safety tip to review the important distinctions between the two categories of tank cars in use in the United States: General Service Cars and Pressure Service Cars, and how to identify the type via specification markings.

Watch a Hazmat Minute video on this topic by clicking here.

The latest Hazardous Material Safety Tip provides a helpful overview for your team, outlining the sections of the Emergency Response Guidebook (ERG).

Watch a Hazmat Minute video on this topic by clicking here.

There are several steps that must be adhered to each and every time roadway workers are required to foul a track or tracks. This Safety Tip discusses basic guidance when doing so.

Watch a Safety Minute video on this topic by clicking here.

The latest Hazardous Materials Safety Tip is the third in a series, reviewing the documentation required for the movement of Hazardous Materials.

Watch a Hazmat Minute video on this topic by clicking here.

This Safety Tip discusses our perceptions. Accurately conveying the intent and purpose of rules and instructions to employees will improve their understanding of safety rules and overall work performance.

Watch a Safety Minute video on this topic by clicking here.

This Hazmat Safety Tip reviews the necessary elements that railroad personnel should check for and review related to Emergency Response Information as part of reviewing shipping papers.

Watch a Hazmat Minute video on this topic by clicking here.

This Safety Tip discusses when rolling stock and on track maintenance equipment is in the clear.

Watch a Safety Minute video on this topic by clicking here.

This first Safety Tip in the hazmat series discusses required documents including shipping papers.

Watch a Hazmat Minute video on this topic by clicking here.

This Safety Tip discusses who is responsible for your safety and that of your coworkers.

Watch a Safety Minute video on this topic by clicking here.

For railcars containing hazardous materials, this Safety Tip discusses basic tips for conducting a safety and security inspection.

Watch a Hazmat Minute video on this topic by clicking here.

This Safety Tip provides guidance on preventing one of the most common workplace causes of injuries.

Watch a Safety Minute video on this topic by clicking here.

This Safety Tip describes the specific requirements that help keep employees and equipment safe when a shoving movement is to be made.

Watch a Safety Minute video on this topic by clicking here.

Proper back safety ergonomics and techniques are important and must be part of ongoing training. Check out this safety tip to learn more.

Watch a Safety Minute video on this topic by clicking here.