49 CFR § 232.211 - Class III brake tests-trainline continuity inspection.

§ 232.211 Class III brake tests-trainline continuity inspection.

(a) A Class III brake test shall be performed on a train by a qualified person, as defined in § 232.5, to test the train brake system when the configuration of the train has changed in certain ways. In particular, a Class III brake test shall be performed at the location where any of the following changes in the configuration of the train occur:

(1) Where a locomotive or a caboose is changed;

(2) Where a car or a block of cars is removed from the train with the consist otherwise remaining intact;

(3) At a point other than the initial terminal for the train, where a car or a solid block of cars that is comprised of cars from only one previous train the cars of which have remained continuously and consecutively coupled together with the trainline remaining connected, other than for removing defective equipment, since being removed from its previous train that has previously received a Class I brake test and that has not been off air for more than four hours is added to a train;

(4) At a point other than the initial terminal for the train, where a solid block of cars that is comprised of cars from a single previous train is added to a train, provided that the solid block of cars was required to be separated into multiple solid blocks of cars due to space or trackage constraints at a particular location when removed from the previous train, and the cars have previously received a Class I brake test, have not been off air more than four hours, and the cars in each of the multiple blocks of cars have remained continuously and consecutively coupled together with the train line remaining connected, except for the removal of defective equipment. Furthermore, these multiple solid blocks of cars must be added to the train in the same relative order (no reclassification) as when removed from the previous train, except for the removal of defective equipment; or

(5) At a point other than the initial terminal for the train, where a car or a solid block of cars that has received a Class I or Class II brake test at that location, prior to being added to the train, and that has not been off air for more than four hours is added to a train.

(b) A Class III brake test shall consist of the following tasks and requirements:

(1) The train brake system shall be charged to the pressure at which the train will be operated, and the pressure at the rear of the train shall not be less than 60 psi, as indicated at the rear of the train by an accurate gauge or end-of-train device;

(2) The brakes on the rear car of the train shall apply in response to a 20-psi brake pipe service reduction and shall remain applied until the release is initiated by the controlling locomotive;

(3) When the release is initiated, the brakes on the rear car of the train shall be inspected to verify that it did release; and

(4) Before proceeding the operator of the train shall know that the brake pipe pressure at the rear of freight train is being restored.

(c) As an alternative to the rear car brake application and release portion of the test, it shall be determined that the brake pipe pressure of the train is being reduced, as indicated by a rear car gauge or end-of-train telemetry device, and then that the brake pipe pressure of the train is being restored, as indicated by a rear car gauge or end-of-train telemetry device. If an electronic or radio communication link between a controlling locomotive and a remotely controlled locomotive attached to the rear end of a train is utilized to determine that brake pipe pressure is being restored, the operator of the train shall know that the air brakes function as intended on the remotely controlled locomotive.

(d) Whenever the continuity of the brake pipe is broken or interrupted with the train consist otherwise remaining unchanged, it must be determined that the brake pipe pressure of the train is being restored as indicated by a rear car gauge or end-of-train device prior to proceeding. In the absence of an accurate rear car gauge or end-of-train telemetry device, it must be determined that the brakes on the rear car of the train apply and release in response to air pressure changes made in the controlling locomotive.

[66 FR 4193, Jan. 17, 2001, as amended at 67 FR 17583, Apr. 10, 2002]