KCSR Railroad Bridge Safety

The Kansas City Southern Railway Company (KCSR) is committed to the safe operation of freight trains over the railroad bridges across its approximately 3,400-mile network. Whether wholly-owned by KCSR or in joint ownership with other entities, these bridges are well-designed, maintained and equipped for the safe transportation of freight traffic. These bridges span a variety of geographic and manmade features, including water bodies, roads, highways, other railroad tracks and bridges; and are built of timber, concrete or steel with either a ballast or open deck, or a combination of the two within the same bridge.

A Team Committed to Safety

  • KCSR has more than 1,500 bridges in operation and a professional team of bridge inspectors, assistant bridge inspectors, district bridge supervisors, and bridge maintenance and production workers.  We use state of the art equipment and materials to maintain and construct new bridges – all in an effort to help keep our network operating safely.

The Process to Maintain Safety

  • In compliance with the U.S. Code of Federal Regulations, 49 CFR Part 237 pertaining to Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) bridge safety standards, KCSR adheres to a formal bridge safety management program.
  • The bridge safety management program outlines how bridge capacity is determined, railroad bridge design and construction, the bridge inspection process and documentation, and heavy/high and wide loads.
  • KCSR performs bridge inspections every day across its network, surpassing the frequency of FRA-required inspections.
  • The KCSR bridge team uses a Bridge Information Management System (BIMS) to record inspections.  BIMS requires that inspection results are reviewed and approved by qualified bridge inspectors.  KCSR performs regular audits on its bridge inspections and management processes.

    Supplemental Inspection Technology

    • KCSR owns a bridge inspection vehicle called a “Snooper” truck that is specially equipped to allow safe access to inspect the entire bridge structure.  The “Snooper” truck enables the inspector to access hard to reach areas on a bridge to ensure complete inspections are performed.
    • KCSR deploys underwater divers to inspect portions of bridges that are not visible from the surface.

    Commitment to Maintenance, Repair & Replacement

    • KCS is committed to the continued investment in our people, technology and infrastructure in order to provide the safest railroad for our communities, and efficient operation for our customers.

    Report a Concern

    A federal statute enacted in 2015 provides for certain bridge information to be made available to states and their political subdivisions. Further information about state and local government requests for bridge inspection information is available on the FRA’s website.

    To report an emergency on the railroad, please contact the KCSR Critical Incident Desk at 877-527-9464.