Source: BNSF (Press Release)
BNSF locomotive engineers who score in the top 5 percent of network simulator training are being honored with the Top Gun Award in recognition of their performance.
The Top Gun Program was started this year, said Shane Merritt, manager of locomotive engineer training and field simulation, Technical Training Center (TTC), in Overland Park, Kan. The award recognizes engineers who excel when they complete training on a BNSF network simulator (NetSim).
An estimated 4,000 Year "A" locomotive engineers will receive training on the simulators at about 80 locations in 2010. During NetSim training, engineers complete two 75-minute runs and one 20-minute "unusual conditions" training run. Based on the territories where they operate, engineers may complete runs that include non-mountain grade, mountain grade and/or distributed power and positive train control. Scores are based on individual train handling and rules compliance. Locomotive engineer instructors provide engineers with a briefing on the track chart, timetable and paperwork similar to the documents they receive in the field, such as Form As and Form Bs.
This year, Merritt said, engineers' performances are being tracked against their peers' NetSim scores. Engineers who score in the top 5 percent receive a "Top Gun Award" certificate from the TTC, presented to the employee by his/her road foreman of engines.
"I believe we have the best engineers in the industry," Merritt said. "This is one way of acknowledging the best of the best."
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