Technical Program Specialist - Emergency Management

Location: Washington, DC
Date Posted: 06-26-2018
Technical Program Specialist –  Emergency Management  

MSC Background

The Metrorail Safety Commission (MSC) is the designated State Safety Oversight Agency (SSOA) responsible for overseeing the safety of the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) Metrorail system, which operates rail transit in State of Maryland, the District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Virginia. The MSC is responsible for implementing an effective oversight program in compliance with the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21), Title 49 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 674, and other applicable regulations. MSC duties span a wide range of daily, periodic, annual, and triennial oversight activities. The MSC is responsible for conducting a robust complement of observations, event investigations, inspections, special studies, and audits at WMATA, all with a focus on maintaining and enhancing the safety of customers, employees, infrastructure, and assets. The MSC will promulgate safety standards and requirements for the Metrorail System, and has the authority to take swift and decisive action to address non-compliance or hazardous conditions.
Position Overview
The MSC is recruiting for a Technical Program Specialist – Emergency Management to serve as a subject matter expert for inspecting, auditing, and investigating the health, safety and assets of the WMATA Metrorail System including fire protection, fire life safety, emergency preparedness, emergency response integration into WMATA Metrorail. This recruitment is open to anyone who meets the required qualifications listed below. The selected candidate will serve under the leadership of the MSC Chief Executive Officer.
The selected candidate will ensure a commitment to effective safety oversight program administration through direct leadership, role modeling, establishing working relationships with WMATA personnel, coordinating with a team of skilled and qualified auditors, and applying technical expertise to promote rail transit safety. Furthermore, the incumbent must have sufficient knowledge of industry best practices and benchmarks to effectively and collaborative monitor and evaluate the changes recommended or underway at the WMATA Metrorail system, and to develop recommendations for continued safety improvement.
Responsibilities and Duties
The Technical Program Specialist – Emergency Management is responsible for:
  • Inspects the condition of WMATA Metrorail’s Subway Fire-Life Safety Equipment (stand pipes, exits, call boxes, exhaust fans, etc.), and lighting; performs detailed assessments as required by FTA Safety Advisories, MSC Program Standard safety certification requirements, NTSB Urgent Recommendations, and other requirements as appropriate
  • Audits areas of WMATA’s Agency Safety Plan involving Subway Fire-Life Safety Equipment (i.e. maintenance, training, etc.) and emergency preparedness, providing a thorough report detailing any findings
  • Assists in FTA, NTSB, or other agency investigations of WMATA Metrorail signal systems as needed
  • Provides review and ensures WMATA Metrorail capital projects compliance with requirements involving public safety/emergency management
  • Participates in relevant MSC-led meetings, and serves as MSC representation in relevant WMATA or other agency-led meetings
  • Coordinating with multiple WMATA departments to schedule routine activities and special audits.
  • Advising the MSC Board and Chief Executive Officer on technical matters pursuant to overall public safety/emergency management practices.
  • Performing safety inspection, audits and other various duties within the Metrorail system.
A minimum of 10 years of experience in fire protection, fire life safety, emergency preparedness, emergency response integration into a rail system or railroad is required.
Knowledge and familiarity of applicable Federal, State, and Local laws and regulations is required, including industry best practices and standards such as those coordinated by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA) and American Railway Engineering and Maintenance-of-Way Association (AREMA).
Prior experience with a rail transit, SSOA, or with Safety Management Systems (SMS) is strongly preferred.
Emergency response, planning, or management experience is highly desirable.
A Bachelor’s degree in emergency management or a related technical specialization is required.
Residency Requirement
Given the frequency of site visits to the WMATA Metrorail system by MSC personnel, including the need to respond quickly to an event scene, the incumbent for this position must live within 20 miles of any Metrorail station.
Physical Requirements
MSC inspection, audit, and investigation work requires the person in this position to possess the ability to move for long periods on potentially rocky and uneven surfaces along railroad right-of-way, rail yards, and maintenance facilities on an occasional basis. The work requires the ability to position oneself to take measurements; ascend/descend ladders, narrow staircases, and rail and maintenance vehicles. Successful applicants must be able to detect and observe sufficiently to perform core inspection functions of the discipline and remain safe along the Metrorail System.
The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job.  Reasonable accommodations will be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
Work may take place at any time of day as warranted by emergency conditions or scheduled inspections (e.g. responding to a Metrorail event or conducting observations of overnight maintenance work). Work may take place on or about WMATA property where MSC personnel must be alert at all times for: the approach of trains or other rolling equipment; slips/trips/fall hazards; and hazardous materials. While on-site, MSC personnel must also take precautions with electrical hazards associated with revenue and non-revenue vehicles and equipment, the third rail, and other traction power equipment throughout the Metrorail system. The incumbent may be exposed to unfavorable weather conditions, including temperature extremes and precipitation, and other environmental discomforts such as insects and vegetation on or about rail property.
Personal protective equipment (PPE) will be required for specific job functions. All MSC personnel will comply with WMATA requirements for PPE as applicable to the circumstances, as well as with applicable industry standards.
All MSC staff positions require possession of a valid driver’s license in order to travel to meetings, inspection locations, or event scenes as necessitated.
The Technical Program Specialist – Emergency Management is required to obtain and maintain the Transit Safety and Security Program (TSSP) Certificate and complete the Safety Management System Training component required by the FTA’s Safety Certification Training Program final interim provisions. Other industry-recognized transportation safety certifications are desirable.
Emergency Management Certification from FEMA or International Association of Emergency Managers (IAEM) are desirable.
The ideal candidate will possess the abilities and skills to:
  • Utilize comprehensive knowledge of emergency management and evaluation of programs and plans. 
  • Convey knowledge of emergency management and public safety interaction sufficient to understand the safety significance of deviations and combinations of deviations.
  • Convey safety significance and technical knowledge to a wide audience of internal and external policymakers and senior managers.
  • Communicate and interpret specialized knowledge of public safety and emergency management with appropriate personnel. 
  • Conduct hazard assessments, root cause and fault tree analyses.

The MSC is located at 777 North Capitol ST NE, #402, Washington, DC 20002 and is responsible for conducting SSOA activities for the WMATA Metrorail System across the D.C. metro region. 
Salary is regionally competitive and will be commensurate with skills and experience. 

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