According to Progressive Rail:
The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) recently served notice that it's issuing a final rule to amend track and passenger equipment safety standards in order to promote the safe interaction of rail vehicles and track under a variety of conditions at speeds up to 220 mph.
To take effect July 11, the final rule revises standards for track geometry and safety limits for a vehicle's response to track conditions, enhances vehicle/track qualification procedures and adds flexibility for permitting high cant deficiency train operations through curves at conventional speeds, FRA officials said in a notice published in the Federal Register.
This will enable ordering of off the shelf HSR equipment and mixed operation of them with Tier I equipment below 125mph.
Additional rulemaking focused on NEC continues, which will allow mixed operation of Tier II and Tier III equipment in intermingled operation in appropriately equipped positive train separation regime. This will allow operation of current Acelas and new higher speed Acela IIs on the same track without temporal separation.
Thought y'all might be interested in this important development and will drink to it.
You can read the whole article here.
Edited by jis, 26 March 2013 - 10:48 AM.