Air Brake AssociationAir Brake Association (ABA)

The mission of the ABA is to enlighten, educate, and establish a dialog to advance the safety and success of the rail industry. The ABA provides a forum that allows for the dissemination of knowledge that plays an integral part in the development of technology.  The technical presentations provide the industry with a platform to not only discuss pertinent issues, but also offer innovative solutions. The 2019 program includes papers discussing important industry initiatives such as:

  • Air brake regulatory trends
  • Expert testimonials on the latest air brake technologies
  • Tips for reducing wheelset costs

Monday, September 23

9:00 AM – 9:45 AM (Joint Session with IAROO)

CFR 243-Training, Qualifications, and Oversight for Safety-Related Railroad Employees

Introduction, overview of regulatory components, and anticipated involvement from participating railroads as to prepare for the implementation date.

Speaker:  Brandon Hanzlicek, Manager Transportation Training; BNSF Railway Company.

10:00 AM – 10:45 AM

Regulatory Reform and 49 CFR Part 232- 2019

This paper will discuss the new notices of proposed Rulemaking of Executive Order 13777 issued on 2/24/17 with regard to EOT device waivers, single car air brake tests, 232 Appendix B updates, 24-hour off-air for Class 1 brake inspections, air flow method calculations, permitting 90 CFM air flow on DP trains, automated single car tests and extended haul notification.

Speaker: Steve Zuiderveen, MP&E Senior Safety Specialist,  Office of Railroad Safety, Federal Railroad Administration

11:00 AM – 11:35 AM

BSC Update 232 Re-regulation

AAR Brake Systems Committee will provide an update of the 2018-2019 activities of the committee, such as modifications and regulatory changes as well as preview work of the committee for the upcoming year.

Speaker: Bill Sheesley, Manager Mechanical Engineering Car, Union Pacific Railroad

1:45 PM – 2:30 PM

The Sound of Air Brakes

Chronology of the development of the various air brake valves used in the locomotive cabs from early days to present, with a theme of how over time they have become virtually silent with the advent of the EAB Systems.

Speaker:  Don Crawford, CABC

2:45 PM – 3:30 PM

Wheelset Savings Study – Using Conventional Powered Sustained Release Hand Brake

A paper detailing a comparison study of Group Q and Group N hand brakes equipped on sixty freight cars of two Class 1 railroads using AAR car repair billing data of wheel replacements illustrating monetary savings incurred when using statistical analysis concerning the time value of money.

Speaker: Dan Davern, Amsted Rail

3:45 PM – 4:30 PM

Underslung Air Hose Arrangements, the Good, the Bad and the Ugly

The presentation will focus on air hoses that are located under the coupler for cushioned rail cars. The basics of the underslung air hose arrangements, what a good system looks like and common problems that cause unwanted air hose separations and train delays will be discussed.

Speakers: Dave Cummins, CP, Jason Reiling, Strato Inc.

Tuesday, September 24

9:45 AM – 10:30 AM

The Development of a Modular Integrated Bogie Brake System

Discussion of the development of a modular integrated truck mounted brake system which should reduce asymmetric wheel wear and tapered shoe wear. The paper will also discuss several field trials with data to support the reduced wear.

Speakers: Ryan Kepley and Keith McCabe, Amsted Rail

10:45 AM – 11:30 AM

Applied Flow Diagnostic; Hidden in Plain Sight

Session Information Coming

Speaker: Ed Gaughan, WABTEC

12:30 PM – 1:15 PM

Session TBA

Session Information Coming

12:30 PM – 1:15 PM

ABA Business Meeting




Join RSI and colleagues from around the nation at the Minneapolis Convention Center, September 22-25, 2019 for the RSI Education & Technical Training Conference.

Questions about the RSI Education & Technical Conference? Email