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Derails are emergency devices for rail cars and locomotives. OSHA, FRA, and DOT regulations require derail protection for all active rail sidings.
Derails are emergency stopping devices for rail cars and locomotives. OSHA, FRA, and DOT regulations require derail protection for all active rail sidings.
The derail lifts the flange of the wheel and drops it clear of the rail. At the same time the wheel on the other rail falls down between the rails. The derailed wheels bite into the soft surface of ties and ballast and slide to a stop.
Depending on speed, a derailed car or locomotive may travel some distance before stopping.
One car rolling into another
Unauthorized locomotive coupling to stationary car
A loose car rolling out onto the mainline
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Here are some guidelines to choosing a derail, but before purchasing be sure to check with your local railroad to be sure you are using the type appropriate for your track conditions.
A permanent derail (hinged or retractable) gives you the convenience and security of a derail ready at all times to prevent unauthorized entry or car movement on your siding.
A portable derail gives you the flexibility of temporarily protecting any rail siding on your property.
If your main concern is preventing unauthorized locomotive entry to your siding, choose a 1-way derail.
If you also need to prevent a rollaway car from leaving your siding, use a 2-way derail.
4-axle: choose 1-way or 2-way, any derail style
6-axle: choose 1-way derails, in any derail style. Use "low-angle" 2-way derails (the angle of deflection of the longer wheel base is too sharp for standard 2-ways) .. or, use two 1-ways back-to-back if traffic comes from two directions.
If you have exposed rail built on wooden ties you can use any derail.
If your track is on steel ties, your choice of derail is limited to the hinged derail plus our steel tie adapter plate.
Do not use any hinged derails on track built with resin or concrete ties. A hinged or moveable wedge-type car stop may serve in place of a derail. Contact us for advice. Another alternative is to replace two of the resin or concrete ties with wooden ties.
Portable derails are for use on wood or full length pre-stressed concrete ties made to North American designs. Do not use on resin or steel ties.
Do not use derails on flush rail. The derailed wheels may not be able to sufficiently dig into the surrounding pavement to bring the car to a prompt stop. The alternative is to excavate the pavement in order install a hinged or moveable wedge-type car stop. Contact us for advice.
Portable derails fit all rail sizes, 90 lb. and up. Hinged and retractable derails are made in four standard sizes, each of which fits a small range of rails. Submit a sizing form when ordering hinged or retractable derails.
(Direction of throw is from the viewpoint of the oncoming locomotive or rail car.)
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(4) Handling pulpwood from flatcars and all other railway cars.
(V) Flatcars and all other cars shall be chocked during unloading. Where equipment is not provided with hand brakes, rail damping chocks shall be used.
(vi) A derail shall be used to prevent movement of other rail equipment into cars where persons are working.
(iii) Caution signs shall be so placed on the track or car as to give necessary warning to persons approaching the car from open end or ends of siding and shall be left up until after the car is unloaded and disconnected from discharge connections. Signs shall be of metal or other suilable material, at least 12 by 15 inches in size and bear the words ‘’STOP-Tank Car Connected” or ‘’STOP-Men at Work” the word, “STOP,’ being in letters at least 4 inches high and the other words in letters at least 2 inches high.
(iv) The track of a tank car siding shall be substantially level.
(v) Brakes shall be set and wheels blocked on all cars being unloaded.
(iii) While cars are on sidetrack for loading or unloading, the wheels at both ends shall be blocked on the rails.
(2) Wheel stops or other recognized positive protection shall be provided to prevent railroad cars from moving during loading or unloading operations.
(4) Positive protection shall be provided to prevent railroad cars from being moved while dockboards or bridge plates are in position.
(7) Brakes shall be set and wheel blocks shall be in place to prevent movement of trucks, trailers, or railroad cars while loading or unloading.
(5) Positive protection shall be provided to prevent railroad cars from being moved while dockboards or bridge plates are in position.
(f) Rolling railroad cars. Derail and/or bumper blocks shall be provided on spur railroad tracks where a rolling car could contact other cars being worked, enter a building, work or traffic area.