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Notice

Proposed Agency Information Collection Activities; Comment Request

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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AGENCY:

Federal Railroad Administration, DOT.

ACTION:

Notice.

SUMMARY:

In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 and its implementing regulations, the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) hereby announces that it is seeking approval of the following information collection activities. Before submitting these information collection requirements for clearance by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), FRA is soliciting public comment on specific aspects of the activities identified below.

DATES:

Comments must be received no later than December 19, 2003.

ADDRESSES:

Submit written comments on any or all of the following proposed activities by mail to either: Mr. Robert Brogan, Office of Safety, Planning and Evaluation Division, RRS-21, Federal Railroad Administration, 1120 Vermont Ave., NW., Mail Stop 17, Washington, DC 20590, or Ms. Debra Steward, Office of Information Technology and Productivity Improvement, RAD-20, Federal Railroad Administration, 1120 Vermont Ave., NW., Mail Stop 35, Washington, DC 20590. Commenters requesting FRA to acknowledge receipt of their respective comments must include a self-addressed stamped postcard stating, “Comments on OMB control number 2130-New''. Alternatively, comments may be transmitted via facsimile to (202) 493-6230 or (202) 493-6170, or E-mail to Mr. Brogan at robert.brogan@fra.dot.gov, or to Ms. Steward at debra.steward@fra.dot.gov. Please refer to the assigned OMB control number or collection title in any correspondence submitted. FRA will summarize comments received in response to this notice in a subsequent notice and include them in its information collection submission to OMB for approval.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Mr. Robert Brogan, Office of Planning and Evaluation Division, RRS-21, Federal Railroad Administration, 1120 Vermont Ave., NW., Mail Stop 17, Washington, DC 20590 (telephone: (202) 493-6292) or Debra Steward, Office of Information Technology and Productivity Improvement, RAD-20, Federal Railroad Administration, 1120 Vermont Ave., NW., Mail Stop 35, Washington, DC 20590 (telephone: (202) 493-6139). (These telephone numbers are not toll-free.)

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

The Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA), Pub. L. 104-13, Sec. 2, 109 Stat. 163 (1995) (codified as revised at 44 U.S.C. 3501-3520), and its implementing regulations, 5 CFR part 1320, require Federal agencies to provide 60-days notice to the public for comment on information collection activities before seeking approval by OMB. 44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A); 5 CFR 1320.8(d)(1), 1320.10(e)(1), 1320.12(a). Specifically, FRA invites interested respondents to comment on the following summary of proposed information collection activities regarding (i) whether the information collection activities are necessary for FRA to properly execute its functions, including whether the activities will have practical utility; (ii) the accuracy of FRA's estimates of the burden of the information collection activities, including the validity of the Start Printed Page 59982methodology and assumptions used to determine the estimates; (iii) ways for FRA to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information being collected; and (iv) ways for FRA to minimize the burden of information collection activities on the public by automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology (e.g., permitting electronic submission of responses). See 44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A)(i)-(iv); 5 CFR 1320.8(d)(1)(i)-(iv). FRA believes that soliciting public comment will promote its efforts to reduce the administrative and paperwork burdens associated with the collection of information mandated by Federal regulations. In summary, FRA reasons that comments received will advance three objectives: (i) Reduce reporting burdens; (ii) ensure that it organizes information collection requirements in a “user friendly” format to improve the use of such information; and (iii) accurately assess the resources expended to retrieve and produce information requested. See 44 U.S.C. 3501.

Below is a brief summary of proposed new information collection activities that FRA will submit for clearance by OMB as required under the PRA:

Title: Work Schedules and Sleep Patterns of Maintenance of Way Employees.

OMB Control Number: 2130-New.

Abstract: In a continuing effort to improve rail safety and to reduce the number of injuries and fatalities to rail workers, FRA and the rail industry have recently focused on the issue of fatigue among train and engine crew personnel. Because railroading is an around-the-clock, seven-days-a-week operation and because a wide array of workers are needed both to operate and to maintain the nation's railroads, other crafts—besides train and engine crews—can also be subject to fatigue. The non-operating crafts, including locomotive and car repair, track maintenance, signal system maintenance and telecommunications, fall into this second category. FRA is proposing a study which will focus on maintenance of way employees, one of the non-operating railroad crafts. The project will be very similar in both method and scope to a current study focusing on railroad signalmen. To develop an understanding of the work schedule-related fatigue issues for maintenance of way employees, FRA proposes to undertake this study. The proposed study has two primary purposes: (1) It aims to document and characterize the work/rest schedules and sleep patterns of the maintenance of way employees; and (2) It intends to examine the relationship between these schedules and level of alertness/fatigue for the individuals who work these schedules. The intent is to report results in the aggregate, not by railroad. Subjective ratings from participants of their alertness/sleepiness on both work and non-work days will be an integral part of this study. The data will be collected through the use of a daily diary or log, as well as a brief background questionnaire for each participant. Analysis of the diary data will allow FRA to assess whether or not there are any work-related fatigue issues for maintenance of way employees.

Form Number(s): FRA F 6180.113; FRA F 6180.114.

Affected Public: Rail Workers.

Respondent Universe: 338 Maintenance of Way Employees.

Frequency of Submission: On occasion.

Estimated Annual Burden: 874 hours.

Status: Regular Review.

Pursuant to 44 U.S.C. 3507(a) and 5 CFR 1320.5(b), 1320.8(b)(3)(vi), FRA informs all interested parties that it may not conduct or sponsor, and a respondent is not required to respond to, a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number.

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Authority: 44 U.S.C. 3501-3520.

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Issued in Washington, DC on October 14, 2003.

Kathy A. Weiner,

Director, Office of Information Technology and Support Systems, Federal Railroad Administration.

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[FR Doc. 03-26377 Filed 10-17-03; 8:45 am]

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