Q:  My Company has employees that need rail training.  How do I book a training session with Railroad Training Services?


A:  Call our office at 209-603-2032 between the hours of 8am – 5pm Pacific Time to book your training session.


Q: Who performs the training?  What are your qualifications?


A:  Our Instructors have over 65 years of combined service in the railroad industry.  Railroad Training Services has been in business over 10 years, establishing itself as the first Rail Training & Consulting firm on the internet in March of 2000.  Our training material has been assembled by our staff utilizing the most current and up to date procedures and regulations and has been reviewed by the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) and deemed satisfactory.  Our material evolves and changes as the railroad industry evolves and changes.  No time, work or expense has been spared in the creation of our programs, and it is for this reason that all Railroad Training Services training material is copyrighted and protected by International Copyright laws.  It may not be re-used or reproduced without written consent of Railroad Training  Services.  Railroad Training Services does not offer, nor do we believe in, “Internet training courses” for any type of railroad training.  While “internet correspondent courses” are cheaper and may be adequate for some types of training, it simply cannot be safely done with rail training and has no place in the rail industry.  The only way to safely train a crew of rail workers is to come to your location and train them ourselves, in person, utilizing our experienced, professional network of qualified individuals. Remember, your employees lives are at stake. Would you trust your life to a “computer program” that you can’t ask questions or engage in a conversation regarding your safety?  While Railroad Training Services prices are not cheap when compared to a “work book course” or an “internet correspondence course”, they are VERY thorough and complete, and our Instructors do not leave a facility until they have had the opportunity to work with the employees involved and have deemed them “safely trained and competent, to safely perform the tasks they are assigned to do”.  If that requires extra time on our part, that’s fine with us, we’ll do whatever it takes to meet these objectives. Your employee’s lives are in our hands, and as professional railroaders, we take that responsibility very seriously.  That is what makes Railroad Training Services the leader in customer and student safety and satisfaction in our industry.


Q:  How many of our employees should we train?


A:  ALL employees involved with rail operations should receive the training.  Employees who do not receive training will end up being the weakest link in your companies’ safety program and are more likely to be injured or cause injuries to others.  Remember: The key to safety is consistency.  An untrained worker is an accident waiting to happen.  Railroad Training Services primary goal is to ensure that your worksite is accident free, so we are more than happy to work with you and your company to get everyone trained with minimal impact on production, and more importantly, to work within your budget.  Call us for details.  We understand that companies work within a budget and are more than happy to discuss a program to fit your needs.  Please note that Railroad Training Services does NOT offer a “Train the Trainer” program.  We prefer to train all employees involved to insure total compliance with the rules and procedures for a safe work location. 


Q:  Where has Railroad Training Services performed training?


A:  We have provided expert training courses all over the United States and internationally.  We recently completed a large rail project over seas.  Our Instructors have worked in all different types of weather and conditions. We have met and trained many great people and are proud to say that we have NOT had anyone injured or killed at any location after we provided training. Railroad Training Services Instructors have valid United States Passports and will travel to any country where it is safe for Americans to work.  Please note that while our Instructors are English speaking, we can work through translators and can translate our training material in virtually any language.  However, extra time will need to be allotted for this, so please take that into consideration when you contact us to set up your training courses.


Q:  How do we pay for our training?


A:  Railroad Training Services accepts payments via company check, credit card, procurement card, or direct bank transfer (ACH).  Payment in full must be made no less than 15 business days in advance of travel for the first day of training.  Railroad Training Services does not invoice on a “Net 30”.  As a small business, we simply do not have the time or personnel available to spend several days on the phone and computer to track down overdue payments.  Our prices quoted are all inclusive, meaning they include all necessary books, materials & travel expenses for our Instructors unless otherwise quoted.  Please note, cancellations after payment has been made by the client are subject to a surcharge of %50 of the total invoiced amount.  Any fees incurred by Railroad Training Services resulting from a last minute cancellation are also subject to payment by the client.


Q:  How much money should our company expect to spend for this training?


A:  Prices vary depending on too many factors to provide prices online. Because each class is different, we have to consider the type of class, travel distances, amount of personnel to be trained, rental cars and hotels for the Instructors at the work location, etc.  To inquire about pricing, call our office at 209-603-2032 or complete the short on-line questionnaire and we will be happy to provide a written price quote.  If the quote is acceptable to you and your company, call us to book a training session, and we will send a written invoice.  Once payment has been received, we will book the necessary travel.


Q:  What type of facility and equipment do we need to provide for the class?


A:  We require a clean, quiet, comfortable environment with work desks or tables where students can efficiently learn and participate.  Railroad Training Services uses a combination of PowerPoint presentations, videos, text books, and open discussion for the “classroom” portion of its courses.  A digital projector is necessary for presentations.  A dry erase board or “easel pad” with markers and plenty of paper is recommended.  Room should be free of interruptions, and students are requested to silence any cell phones, radios or pagers.  Training rooms and board rooms work well for this.  If a room is unavailable at the work location, a local hotel conference room or banquet room also works well.  Please be advised however, that if you elect to hold classes in a hotel facility, this will be at your companies discretion and expense.  Railroad Training Services does not provide these facilities.  For the “hands-on” portion, rail equipment in good working order and fully compliant with all applicable safety standards, must be provided for the full session.  Railroad Training Services reserves the right to refuse to work with a piece of equipment deemed by our Instructors to be unsafe or non-compliant with Federal Safety Standards.


Q:  How long are the classes and what are the hours?


A: The length of time to teach each class depends on many factors, including the type of class, class size, and experience of the students.  Expect students to spend at least 8 hours per day in the classroom portion and as much as 12 hours a day during “Hands-On” training in the field. Railroad Training Service’s Instructors will observe and comply with Federal Laws regarding the “Hours of Service for Train Service Employees” and will not work more than 12 hours at a time.  Starting dates are at the discretion of the client company, as is the starting times for classes.  We will work any “shift” necessary to avoid interruption to company production.  We will also work weekends if necessary to accomplish your goals of a safe, compliant, efficient workforce. 10 to15 minute breaks are provided every hour to hour and a half during the “classroom” portion to ensure the safety and comfort of employees.  A meal break of one hour is also provided during each training day. The employees are free to choose where they go for lunch.  While our Instructors are flexible, excessively long coffee and lunch breaks are disruptive to the class and will not be tolerated.  We understand that training sessions can be an unpleasant experience, so we encourage discussion and input from the students. Our number one priority is to ensure that each and every student retains the information provided in the training. While we keep our sessions focused and centered on the task at hand, we have been told on numerous occasions, by both management and students, that our classes are pleasant, enjoyable, and in a lot of cases, “fun”.  It is our opinion that if the training session is an enjoyable experience, the students usually retain the information,  making them safer employees.


Q:  What will my employees need to attend a training session?


A:  For the “classroom” portion of the session, we recommend that students wear comfortable, yet tasteful attire and ask that they bring writing instruments and notepads.  Our Instructors strongly encourage note taking. Cell phones, radios and pagers should be turned off.  We like to tell our students that our training sessions are “habit building exercises”. Therefore, during the first day of “classroom” training, we discuss necessary Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and work gear necessary to safely perform their job duties and we encourage the students to bring the necessary equipment with them on subsequent classroom days so that they get in the habit of always having it available. All of your companies’ safety rules and requirements will be adhered to. All necessary PPE shall be provided to the students by your company before starting the “hands-on” portion of the session.  Students who do not have the necessary PPE will not be allowed to participate in the “hands-on” portion of the session until they receive the necessary equipment. 


Q:  What qualifications do our employees receive after completing training?


A:  Students who successfully complete training are issued a Certificate of Completion after class.  These are signed by the Instructor for each student and are sent to the point of contact for your Company for the employee’s personnel files.  They are valid for 1 year following the date of issuance. Certifications are sent to the company once our Instructors return to their office in California. Railroad Training Services will also administer a written exam for each of its courses, and unless specified otherwise by the client, the written exams are administered on the last day of the “classroom” portion.  Each exam takes approximately 1 -3 hours to complete and is given in an “open book” format.  The exam answer sheets are then given to your company to go into the employees personnel file as a record of their competence and understanding of the rules and procedures.  Many employees ask for individual wallet size Certification Cards that they can carry on the jobsites themselves, and those are provided to them free of charge if requested.  


Q:  My employees have already been trained, but require “refresher” training.  Does Railroad Training Services provide “refresher” training?


A:  Absolutely.  In the rail industry, safety rules, regulations and procedures change and evolve constantly over time, so we recommend refresher training every 12 months to ensure your employees are as safe and compliant as they can possibly be.  Railroad Training Services will be happy to provide initial training and refresher training on an annual basis.  This will ensure your employees are always up to date and compliant with all applicable rules and regulations.


It is our hope that this answers any questions you or your company may have relating to Railroad Training Services training programs.  However, if you have any further questions, please call us at 209-603-2032.