Though it may not get the respect it deserves, America’s cross-continental rail network is one of our most important sections of infrastructure, transporting goods reliably, sustainably, and affordably across our nation. Everything from the cars we drive to the food we eat arrives at destinations by way of the railroad, but not without slowly taking a toll on the rails themselves. The sheer tonnage of our freight means that even well-built trackage begins to show signs of wear and tear from bearing the weight of the iron horse day after day.

If we’re to keep making the most of this tremendous infrastructural asset, then our rail trackage requires intermittent repair. In turn, if we’re to rail construction, our workers need to be able to do so safely. Here’s how to safely use railroad repair equipment in order to preserve both our valuable rails and the valuable workers who maintain them.

Review Your Equipment Before Work

The steel and rock of a railroad track can put a little wear on even the toughest tools. Over time, however, that wear can accrue into enough damage to compromise the integrity of your equipment. Dents, cracks, burrs, and gouges in equipment such as magnet grapples and scrap magnets can affect their performance and endanger safety. A bent tine on a grapple, for instance, could cause it to lose its interlocking grip. Before commencing, guarantee that your equipment is still up to the task. Err on the side of caution.

Safe Storage

Railroad repair calls for a lot of tools and heavy machinery over the course of a job, but seldom will your crew use everything at once. In the meantime, make sure that any implements not in use are sufficiently out of your way. Keeping the worksite streamlined makes a stressful job less overwhelming. As long as everyone knows where everything is, there’s no reason to clutter a localized area.

Hammer With Care

Anyone swinging a hammer for railroad repair is carrying a simple albeit heavy tool. When using a hammer for rail construction, keep other workers out of proximity to you, and if you see someone hammering, respect that space. This is a matter of avoiding contact both with the hammer and with debris from the hammering.

Buy Only the Best

It’s important for our rail workers to know how to safely use railroad repair equipment, but safe operations aren’t possible without quality equipment. Moley Magnetics appreciates the contributions of our railroad workers and the importance of our rail system. That’s why we’re a leading provider of railroad grapples and railroad battery magnets, featuring the electromagnets, specialized railroad grapples, ballast buckets, and rail breakers that make continuing peak performance possible on Class 1 lines, freight spurs, and every mile in between.