Railcar 101
The Basics of Railcars: Car Types,
Components and Rules
Overview and Basics
Ken Henman
The Cost of Railcar Maintenance
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*According to the Surface Transportation Board
2004 Railway Operating Expenses Annual
Report the Class I railroads spent
$1,145,888,000 on freight car repairs and
maintenance
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$305,898,000 was for repairs billed to others
*2004 STB Form R-1 Schedule 410
May 21, 2008
DTE Rail Services, Inc
Maintenance Management Seminar
2
Why Do You Need to Manage Railcar
Maintenance?
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Regulatory requirements for U.S. freight cars
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Federal Railroad Administration
Association of American Railroads
May 21, 2008
DTE Rail Services, Inc
Maintenance Management Seminar
3
Why Do You Need to Manage Railcar
Maintenance?
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This is purely “Corrective Maintenance” to your
equipment per the FRA and AAR Rules
The current hourly rate for repairs done by
railroads is $94.81
But Class I railroads are in the transportation
business, not the repair business
May 21, 2008
DTE Rail Services, Inc
Maintenance Management Seminar
4
A Shift in Ownership and Maintenance
Responsibilities
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In the past everyone called them “railroad” cars
Ownership of today’s railcar fleet has shifted to
private car owners
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*As of January 1, 2007 freight car ownership by Class
I railroads is only 35.3% of all freight cars in U.S.
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*1,346,507 Freight cars in service, all U.S. owners
*475,415 Freight cars in service, Class I railroads
Railroads have encouraged customers into
ownership of railcars in exchange for reduced
freight rates
*AAR Policy & Economics Dept, 1/15/2008
May 21, 2008
DTE Rail Services, Inc
Maintenance Management Seminar
5
The Standards by Which Railroad Cars Must
Be Maintained
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The AAR Equipment Engineering Committee,
which is made up primarily of railroad officials,
sets the mechanical requirements for cars in
interchange service
Car owners are required to maintain their
equipment to this standard
May 21, 2008
DTE Rail Services, Inc
Maintenance Management Seminar
6
The Future and Why You Need to Manage
Railcar Maintenance?
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A change of philosophy
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As far as the railroads are concerned equity interests
and financial liabilities no longer need to be balanced
against railroad operating efficiencies and/or capital
improvements
A new plan
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Implementation of Advanced Technology Safety
Initiative
A proactive approach and opportunity to perform
railcar maintenance for car owners
May 21, 2008
DTE Rail Services, Inc
Maintenance Management Seminar
7
The Future and Why You Need to Manage
Railcar Maintenance?
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Owners who ignore the trends in today’s industry
do so at their own peril
Again- The current hourly rate for repairs done
by railroads is $94.81
Thus the need for proactive maintenance
management
May 21, 2008
DTE Rail Services, Inc
Maintenance Management Seminar
8
Industry Terminology
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AAR (Association of American Railroads)- Association
made up of railroads
AAR Field Manual- The AAR Interchange Rules which
specify inspection, repair and handling requirements of
interchange freight cars
AAR Office Manual- The AAR Interchange Rules which
specify labor and material pricing, sale, acquisition and
settlement for interchange freight cars
ABD- Acoustic Bearing Detectors
ATSI- Advanced Technology Safety Initiative
Bad Order Car- An interchange freight car which is in
need of mechanical attention
May 21, 2008
DTE Rail Services, Inc
Maintenance Management Seminar
9
Industry Terminology
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BRC (Billing Repair Card)- Detailed repair
record/invoicing
CBA (Counter Billing Authority)- A document that issues
authorization to collect or deduct an overcharge from a
bill
Contract Shop- A repair facility designated by car owner
to perform repairs
Data Exchange System- The AAR’s system of collecting,
sorting, analyzing and distributing freight car repair
information
Defect Card- A document accepting responsibility for
damage to an interchange freight car
May 21, 2008
DTE Rail Services, Inc
Maintenance Management Seminar
10
Industry Terminology
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Delivering Line- Subscriber offering a freight car in
interchange
Depreciated Value- The reproduction value of a freight
car adjusted for depreciation up to the date of damage
according to AAR rule 107
Early Warning- A directive issued by the AAR for
interchange freight cars having mechanical defects or
potential safety problems
EHMS- Equipment Health Management System
Foreign Car- Any car not owned by the subscriber
May 21, 2008
DTE Rail Services, Inc
Maintenance Management Seminar
11
Industry Terminology
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Foreign Repair- Any repair performed to an interchange
freight car by a company other than the car owner or
owner’s agent (contract shop repairs)
FRA- Federal Railroad Administration
Handling Line- The railroad of record having possession
of the interchange freight car
Home Shop- A repair facility designated by the car owner
May 21, 2008
DTE Rail Services, Inc
Maintenance Management Seminar
12
Industry Terminology
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Interchange Service- A freight car placed in the North
American interchange system that meets all interchange
requirements
InteRRIS- Integrated Railway Remote Information Service
Jacking- Raising the car body by any means necessary to
safely accomplish repairs
Job Code- A four digit number that identifies the
inspection, repair or testing performed on the car
component applied or removed
May 21, 2008
DTE Rail Services, Inc
Maintenance Management Seminar
13
Industry Terminology
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JIC (Joint Inspection Certificate)- A document detailing
unfair usage damage or loss or extensive owner’s
defects as outlined in AAR Rules 95, 108 and 103
Maintenance Advisory- An informational notice issued by
the AAR for cars having minor mechanical defects or
which preventative/corrective maintenance is to be
performed
Opportunistic Repair- Specific authorized repairs
identified in Section A of any AAR Interchange Rule
May 21, 2008
DTE Rail Services, Inc
Maintenance Management Seminar
14
Industry Terminology
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Private Car Owner- Any non-railroad owner of an
interchange freight car
Private Marked Cars- An interchange freight car
registered in the Umler file with stenciled reporting marks
assigned by the AAR ending with the alpha character “X”
Railroad Marked Cars- An interchange freight car
registered in the Umler file with stenciled reporting marks
assigned by the AAR ending with the alpha character
other than “X”
May 21, 2008
DTE Rail Services, Inc
Maintenance Management Seminar
15
Industry Terminology
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Running Repair- Any repair performed to an interchange
freight car according to AAR Interchange Rules
Service Interruption- A train delay that is caused by a
specific AAR condemnable defect that causes a delay on
the line of the road
THD- Truck Hunting Detector
TPD- Truck Performance Detector
Universal Machine Language Equipment Register
(Umler)- A computer file which contains specific details
such as internal and external dimensions
WILD- Wheel Impact Load Detector
May 21, 2008
DTE Rail Services, Inc
Maintenance Management Seminar
16
Concept of AAR Rules
“The Association of American Railroads has
played a continuous role in developing and
maintaining a comprehensive set of industry
rules and standards aimed at ensuring a safe
and efficient freight rail network in North
America”
*Safety, Interchangeability Go Hand-in Hand,
Railway Age,
July 2000,
Pat Ameen, Association of American Railroads
May 21, 2008
DTE Rail Services, Inc
Maintenance Management Seminar
17
Concept of AAR Rules
”AAR's Rules of Interchange, commonly known
as the "Field Manual" and "Office Manual,"
provide a common set of mandatory practices
for the proper handling of interchange freight
traffic.”
*Safety, Interchangeability Go Hand-in Hand,
Railway Age,
July 2000,
Pat Ameen, Association of American Railroads
May 21, 2008
DTE Rail Services, Inc
Maintenance Management Seminar
18
Concept of AAR Rules
”These rules include the basic mechanical
requirements, conditions governing delivery and
acceptance, responsibility for unfair
usage/damage, disposition of defective
equipment, and a requirement that cars be
equipped with AAR approved components that
affect car interchangeability. The AAR
Interchange Rules prescribe standard repair
practices, define the cost recovery procedure,
and include an arbitration process.”
*Safety, Interchangeability Go Hand-in Hand,
Railway Age,
July 2000,
Pat Ameen, Association of American Railroads
May 21, 2008
DTE Rail Services, Inc
Maintenance Management Seminar
19
Concept of AAR Rules
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In essence the Rules provide safe seamless
railcar interchange throughout the North
American rail system, outlining responsibilities
for mechanical condition while setting equal
standards for all equipment providers
*Safety, Interchangeability Go Hand-in Hand,
Railway Age,
July 2000,
Pat Ameen & David Meeks
May 21, 2008
DTE Rail Services, Inc
Maintenance Management Seminar
20
Field Manual of the AAR Interchange Rules
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Rule A
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Rule B
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Qualifies the standards for component manufacturer and reconditioning
Rule 1
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Outlines the Rules, responsibilities and who must subscribe
Care of Freight Cars, Inspection, repairs to foreign cars, disposition for
unacceptable cars, gages and publications required and car
classification
Rules 3 – 82
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Specific to components and repairs, Air Brakes through Welding
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May 21, 2008
A. Cause for Attention
B. Correct Repairs
C. Reconditioning Requirements
D. Welding Requirements
E. General Information
F. Billing Repair Car Requirements
Job Codes
DTE Rail Services, Inc
Maintenance Management Seminar
21
Field Manual of the AAR Interchange Rules
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Rule 83
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Rules 84 and 85
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Use of Advertisements and Routing Cards and Furnished Material
Rules 88, 89 and 90
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Preparation of Repair Records
Car Part Codes
Why Made Codes
Responsibility Codes
Car Symbols
Repair Facility Symbol
Mechanical Requirements for Acceptance
Conditions Governing Delivery and Acceptance
Acceptable in Interchange
Cars and/or Car Parts Prohibited In Interchange
Rule 91
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Service Interruption
May 21, 2008
DTE Rail Services, Inc
Maintenance Management Seminar
22
Field Manual of the AAR Interchange Rules
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Rule 92
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Rule 95
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Cars Requiring Extensive Repairs
Rule 120
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Handling of Damaged or Destroyed Equipment
Rule 108
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Defect Cards and Joint Inspection Certificates
Rule 107
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Owners Responsibility
Rules 102 and 103
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Handling and/or Delivering Line Responsibility
Rule 96
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Transfer or Adjustment of Lading
Rule Compliance and Enforcement
Appendix A – H
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Various definitions, specifications
May 21, 2008
DTE Rail Services, Inc
Maintenance Management Seminar
23
Office Manual of the AAR Interchange Rules
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Price Matrix
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Qualifies every Job Code for
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Why made
Responsibility code
Condition code
Material value
Labor time standard and labor value
Applicable credits
Provides information concerning specific Job Codes not covered in
the Field Manual
Rule 88, Mechanical Requirements For Acceptance
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Specifies the requirements for new, newly acquired, rebuilt, modified,
increased gross rail load, extended service status, increased life status
and the documentation required for all rail equipment in interchange
service
May 21, 2008
DTE Rail Services, Inc
Maintenance Management Seminar
24
Office Manual of the AAR Interchange Rules
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Rule 93
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Rule 94
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Joint Inspection Certificate, format and procedures
Rule 107
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Defect Card procedures
Rule 103
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Equipment Health Management System - EHMS
Rule 102
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Train II and UMLER Reporting Procedures, Equipment Management
Information System - EMIS
Handling of Damaged or Destroyed Equipment
Disposition/Settlement, depreciated value or settlement value
Rule 111
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Car repair pricing procedures, basis for labor and material values
May 21, 2008
DTE Rail Services, Inc
Maintenance Management Seminar
25
Office Manual of the AAR Interchange Rules
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Rule 112
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Rule 113
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Revision of Rules and participation in “AAR Interchange Agreement”
Rule 125
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Arbitration and Rules Committee, Interpretation and Settlement of
Disputes
Rules 123 and 124
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AAR Rule Compliance and Enforcement, covers inspections and
investigations
Rules 121 and 122
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Data Exchange
Rule 120
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Car repair billing requirements and procedures, invoicing and auditing
Early Warning/Maintenance Advisory System
Appendix A – H
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Definitions and procedures
May 21, 2008
DTE Rail Services, Inc
Maintenance Management Seminar
26
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Railcar 101 - FreightCar Rail Services