Law Enforcement Specialties >> Transit and Railroad Law Enforcement >> Amended LE Safety Act

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Amended LE Safety Act

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Posted almost 6 years ago

 

Senate bill S.376 is currently being brought before the senate. This bill authorizes AMTRAK officers to be included into Title 18 Sec. 926B (National Law Enforcement Concealed Carry Law). While this is great for our brothers at AMTRAK, it does nothing to help out with the railroad police employed by frieght carriers.


When you read the current law, it only allows officers employed by governmental agencies to carry their weapon nation wide. Although there is some argument that railroad police have "federal powers", the truth of the matter is, it allows us to work in other states, but only on railroad property and/or as determined by that particular states law. In addition, the railroad company must notify what ever state the officer is going to be temporarily assigned.


If you fly, that's not a problem. You can just lock your gun up in the luggage and you are good to go. Howerver, if you drive, another problem may be incurred. For example:


You work for a major railroad that covers multiple states. You are employed in Texas and carry a Texas Peace Officer's license. You get called to work in California and you have to drive (K-9 officers know this scenario well!) While you may parallel your company's tracks for 500 miles in between states, you couldn't technically enforce any law on or off railroad property unless each state you were passing through was notified that you were working there.


In addition, one state or another may have a concealed carry law (some states are still anal about this) that may be very strict. If you get stopped, be it in a marked, or unmarked patrol car, there is a risk that you can be arrested for unlawfully carrying a weapon. How? Quite simple. Railroad police officers are not employed by the government, thus they don't meet the definition of what may states consider a "law enforcement officer". Many automatically think that 49 USC 281.01 gives railroad police federal authority, when in reality, it just allows the railroad police officers commissioned in one state to work in another without having to get commissioned by the other state, and they have to follow the authority given to them by that particular state.


Hopefully you see what I'm getting at here. Please contact your congressman/woman and request that all Railroad Police Officers be included into the National Concealed Carry law.

Marvin_martian_max50

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Rate This | Posted almost 6 years ago

 

All the railroad cops I have met were real LEO's.  Maybe the law doesn't recognize them as such, but as far as I'm concerned, they're one of us, and should be included under HR 218.


Go out today and preach the gospel, and if you must, use words. St. Francis of Assisi

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Rate This | Posted almost 6 years ago

 

I agree