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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 and request for comments.

SUMMARY:

In compliance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.), this notice announces that the Information Collection Requirements (ICRs) abstracted below have been forwarded to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review and comment. The ICRs describe the nature of the information collection and its expected burden. The Federal Register notice with a 60-day comment period soliciting comments on the following collections of information was published on March 15, 2006 (71 FR 13452)

DATES:

Comments must be submitted on or before June 19, 2006.

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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 25, Washington, DC 20590 (telephone: (202) 493-6292) or Victor Angelo, Office of Support Systems, RAD-43, Federal Railroad Administration, 1120 Vermont Ave., NW., Mail Stop 35, Washington, DC 20590 (telephone: (202) 493-6470). (These telephone numbers are not toll-free.)

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

The Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA), Public Law No. 104-13, section 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 issue two notices seeking public comment on information collection activities before OMB may approve paperwork packages. 44 U.S.C. 3506, 3507; 5 CFR 1320.5, 1320.8(d)(1), 1320.12. On March 15, 2006, FRA published a 60-day notice in the Federal Register soliciting comment on ICRs that the agency was seeking OMB approval. 71 FR 13452. FRA received no comments after issuing this notice. Accordingly, DOT announces that these information collection activities have been re-evaluated and certified under 5 CFR 1320.5(a) and forwarded to OMB for review and approval pursuant to 5 CFR 1320.12(c).

Before OMB decides whether to approve these proposed collections of information, it must provide 30 days for Start Printed Page 29210public comment. 44 U.S.C. 3507(b); 5 CFR 1320.12(d). Federal law requires OMB to approve or disapprove paperwork packages between 30 and 60 days after the 30 day notice is published. 44 U.S.C. 3507 (b)-(c); 5 CFR 1320.12(d); see also 60 FR 44978, 44983, August 29, 1995. OMB believes that the 30 day notice informs the regulated community to file relevant comments and affords the agency adequate time to digest public comments before it renders a decision. 60 FR 44983, August 29, 1995. Therefore, respondents should submit their respective comments to OMB within 30 days of publication to best ensure having their full effect. 5 CFR 1320.12(c); see also 60 FR 44983, Aug. 29, 1995.

The summaries below describe the nature of the information collection requirements (ICRs) and the expected burden. The revised requirements are being submitted for clearance by OMB as required by the PRA.

Title: Railroad Operating Rules.

OMB Control Number: 2130-0035.

Type of Request: Extension of a currently approved collection.

Affected Public: Railroads.

Form(s): N/A.

Abstract: The collection of information is due to the railroad operating rules set forth in 49 CFR part 217 which require Class I and Class II railroads to file with FRA copies of their operating rules, timetables, and timetable special instructions, and subsequent amendments thereto. Class III railroads are required to retain copies of these documents at their systems headquarters. Also, 49 CFR 220.21(b) prescribes the collection of information which requires railroads to retain one copy of their current operating rules with respect to radio communications and one copy of each subsequent amendment thereto. These documents must be made available to FRA upon request.

Annual Estimated Burden Hours: 766,488 hours.

Title: Filing of Dedicated Cars.

OMB Control Number: 2130-0502.

Type of Request: Extension of a currently approved collection.

Affected Public: Railroads.

Form(s): N/A.

Abstract: Title 49, part 215 of the Code of Federal Regulations, prescribes certain conditions to be followed for the movement of freight cars that are not in compliance with this part. These cars must be identified in a written report to FRA before they are assigned to dedicated service, and the words “Dedicated Service” must be stenciled on each side of the freight car body. FRA uses the information to determine whether the equipment is safe to operate and that the operation qualifies for dedicated service. See 49 CFR 215.5 (c) (2), 215.5 (d).

Annual Estimated Burden Hours: 4 hours.

Title: Bad Order and Home Shop Card.

OMB Control Number: 2130-0519.

Type of Request: Extension of a currently approved collection.

Affected Public: Railroads.

Form(s): N/A.

Abstract: Under 49 CFR part 215, each railroad is required to inspect freight cars placed in service and take the necessary remedial action when defects are identified. Part 215 defects are specific in nature and relate to items that have or could have caused accidents or incidents. Section 215.9 sets forth specific procedures that railroads must follow when it is necessary to move defective cars for repair purposes. For example, railroads must affix a “bad order” tag describing each defect to each side of the freight car. It is imperative that a defective freight car be tagged “bad order” so that it may be readily identified and moved to another location for repair purposes only. At the repair point, the “bad order” tag serves as a repair record. Railroads must retain each tag for 90 days to verify that proper repairs were made at the designated location. FRA and State inspectors review all pertinent records to determine whether defective cars presenting an immediate hazard are being moved in transportation.

Annual Estimated Burden Hours: 12,750 hours.

Title: Stenciling Reporting Mark on Freight Cars.

OMB Control Number: 2130-0520.

Type of Request: Extension of a currently approved collection.

Affected Public: Railroads.

Form(s): N/A.

Abstract: Title 49, section 215.301 of the Code of Federal Regulations, sets forth certain requirements that must be followed by railroad carriers and private car owners relative to identification marks on railroad equipment. FRA, railroads, and the public refer to the stenciling to identify freight cars.

Annual Estimated Burden Hours: 15,000 hours.

Title: Rear-End Marking Devices.

OMB Control Number: 2130-0523.

Type of Request: Extension of a currently approved collection.

Affected Public: Railroads.

Form(s): N/A.

Abstract: The collection of information is set forth under 49 CFR part 221 which requires railroads to furnish a detailed description of the type of marking device to be used for the trailing end of rear cars in order to ensure rear cars meet minimum standards for visibility and display.

Railroads are required to furnish a certification that the device has been tested in accordance with current “Guidelines for Testing Rear End Marking Devices.” Additionally, railroads are required to furnish detailed test records which include the testing organizations, description of tests, number of samples tested, and the test results in order to demonstrate compliance with the performance standard.

Annual Estimated Burden Hours: 8 hours.

Title: Locomotive Certification (Noise Compliance Regulations).

OMB Control Number: 2130-0527.

Type of Request: Extension of a currently approved collection.

Affected Public: Railroads.

Form(s): N/A.

Abstract: Part 210 of title 49 of the United States Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) pertains to FRA's noise enforcement procedures which encompass rail yard noise source standards published by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). EPA has the authority to set these standards under the Noise Control Act of 1972. The information collected by FRA under part 210 is necessary to ensure compliance with EPA noise standards for new locomotives.

Annual Estimated Burden Hours: 2,785 hours.

Title: Grade Crossing Signal System Safety.

OMB Control Number: 2130-0534.

Type of Request: Extension of a currently approved collection.

Affected Public: Railroads.

Form(s): FRA F 6180.83.

Abstract: FRA believes that highway-rail grade crossing (grade crossing) accidents resulting from warning system failures can be reduced. Motorists lose faith in warning systems that constantly warn of an oncoming train when none is present. Therefore, the fail-safe feature of a warning system loses its effectiveness if the system is not repaired within a reasonable period of time. A greater risk of an accident is present when a warning system fails to activate as a train approaches a grade crossing. FRA's regulations require railroads to take specific responses in the event of an activation failure. FRA uses the information to develop better solutions to the problems of grade crossing device malfunctions. With this Start Printed Page 29211information, FRA is able to correlate accident data and equipment malfunctions with the types of circuits and age of equipment. FRA can then identify the causes of grade crossing system failures and investigate them to determine whether periodic maintenance, inspection, and testing standards are effective. FRA also uses the information collected to alert railroad employees and appropriate highway traffic authorities of warning system malfunctions so that they can take the necessary measures to protect motorists and railroad workers at the grade crossing until repairs have been made.

Annual Estimated Burden Hours: 4,151 hours.

Title: Bridge Worker Safety Rules.

OMB Control Number: 2130-0535.

Type of Request: Extension of a currently approved collection.

Affected Public: Railroads.

Form(s): N/A.

Abstract: Section 21039 of Title 49 of the United States Code required FRA to issue rules, regulations, orders, and standards for the safety of maintenance-of-way employees on railroad bridges, including for “bridge safety equipment” such as nets, walkways, handrails, and safety lines, and requirements for the use of vessels when work is performed on bridges located over bodies of water. FRA has added 49 CFR part 214 to establish minimum workplace safety standards for railroad employees as they apply to railroad bridges. Specifically, section 214.15(c) establishes standards and practices for safety net systems. Safety nets and net installations are to be drop-tested at the job site after initial installation and before being used as a fall protection system, after major repairs, and at six-month intervals if left at one site. If a drop-test is not feasible and is not performed, then a written certification must be made by the railroad or railroad contractor, or a designated certified person, that the net does comply with the safety standards of this section. FRA and State inspectors use the information to enforce Federal regulations. The information that is maintained is at the job site promotes safe bridge worker practices.

Annual Estimated Burden Hours: 1 hour.

Title: Railroad Police Officers.

OMB Control Number: 2130-0537.

Type of Request: Extension of a currently approved collection.

Affected Public: Railroads.

Form(s): N/A.

Abstract: Under 49 CFR part 207, railroads are required to notify states of all designated police officers who are discharging their duties outside of their respective jurisdictions. This requirement is necessary to verify proper police authority.

Annual Estimated Burden Hours: 181 hours.

Addressee: Send comments regarding any of these information collections to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management and Budget, 725 Seventeenth Street, NW., Washington, DC 20503, Attention: FRA Desk Officer.

Comments are invited on the following: Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Department, including whether the information will have practical utility; the accuracy of the Department's estimate of the burden of the proposed information collection; ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology.

A comment to OMB is best assured of having its full effect if OMB receives it within 30 days of publication of this notice in the Federal Register.

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

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Issued in Washington, DC on May 15, 2006.

D.J. Stadlter,

Director, Office of Budget, Federal Railroad Administration.

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[FR Doc. E6-7619 Filed 5-18-06; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4910-06-P