RSI Celebrates 50th Anniversary of RSI-AAR Tank Car Safety Research & Test Project

The Railway Supply Institute (RSI) is pleased to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the RSI-Association of American Railroads (AAR) Railroad Tank Car Safety Research & Test Project (Safety Project).

In 1970, RSI and AAR jointly established the Safety Project to conduct scientific and engineering analyses of railroad tank car accidents to identify and evaluate concepts for improving the damage resistance of tank cars. Over the past five decades, the two organizations have invested more than $20 million in the Safety Project, while also investing hundreds of millions more in safety improvements to the tank car fleet.

As part of the Safety Project’s sponsorship, the Tank Car Accident Database (TCAD) was created and has been continuously populated with new data since 1970, with assistance from Sims Professional Engineers and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Through analyzing TCAD data, the Safety Project has been able to verify and quantify the benefits of safety improvements.

For 50 years, the Safety Project has reflected its sponsors’ cooperation and commitment to ongoing improvement in tank car safety, creating a program and a legacy that is unmatched in any other hazardous materials transportation mode.

To learn more about the Safety Project, please visit our Tank Car Resource Center at or download our Safety Project Brochure.

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