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United States Department of Transportation United States Department of Transportation

Human Performance

The Human Performance Division (HPD) implements, and manages human performance and associated training programs intended to increase organizational resilience throughout the railroad industry.

The HPD embraces a multi-discipline approach to understand how humans behave and interact within various operational systems.  This includes an analysis of the antecedents and latent conditions within the system that drive unsafe behaviors.  The division’s primary areas of responsibility are the management of the Confidential Close Call Reporting System (C³RS) and the oversight requirement 49 CFR 243 – Training, Qualification, and Oversight for Safety-related Railroad Employees.

C³RS is a program designed to apply a scientific methodology to the identification, analysis, and correction of latent, systemic issues that directly or indirectly impact operational safety on the railroad.  Railroad management uses the data gathered through this program to reduce operational uncertainty thereby reducing risk to employees and property.

49 CFR Part 243 is designed to ensure that all railroad employees working in safety sensitive positions possess the minimum skills, knowledge, and abilities to safely complete the required tasks of their position.  This is accomplished by the review and approval of the required training programs and the long-term monitoring and oversight of the industry’s training efforts.

 Other areas of interest for the division include:

  • Alertness management initiatives

  • Crew Resource Management

  • Behavior-based safety programs

To accomplish its mission the HPD maintains lines of communication and working partnerships with the scientific and academic communities regarding human and organizational behavior and adult learning techniques.  The HPD also coordinate with the Office of Railroad Policy & Development and the Volpe Research Center on applying research theory to practical application on the railroad.

Human Performance Guidance Documents

Collaborative Incident Analysis and Human Performance Handbook

Last updated: Sunday, November 17, 2019