Helpful Railfanning Information

Information to help improve your railfanning experience along the Florida East Coast Railway

Florida East Coast Railway Radio Frequencies

The FEC does not call signals since it has in-cab signal displays but a radio still makes for more effective train chasing. Since the introduction of Brightline, all trains are required to radio "Hot Rail" anytime they meet or pass another train or encounter work crews. 

As of March 2024, the FEC has switched to using NXDN digital radios. Most traditional radio scanners are not capable of receiving this digital frequency and any transmissions will sound like static. You will need a digital radio specifically with NXDN capabilities to hear anything.

  • 160.53  (AAR 28)- Road Channel
  • 160.77   (AAR 44)- Train to Dispatcher 
  • 160.68  (AAR 38)- Hialeah Yard and all trains south of Iris
  • 161.01   (AAR 60)- Bowden and Hialeah Car Shops
  • 160.65  (AAR 36)- Maintenance of Way channel on the road to avoid tying up road channels by work foreman and crews, used by the Bowden locomotive shop when doing shop movements and testing locomotives, and may be used in Hialeah shop. Most train crews call the shop on this channel to get permission to occupy shop tracks.
  • 161.31   (AAR 80)- switching jobs around yards to avoid tying up road channels.

End of Train and Head of Train Devices

Trains utilize a data telemetry system that employs a device (EOT, FRED) at the rear of the train with a flashing red marker light and a sensor for the train's air brake line. It responds to polls from the radio at the head-end by transmitting telemetry including air line pressure and speed of the train measured by GPS location technology. Almost all railroads in the U.S. use the same pair of UHF frequencies for this data. These devices put out low power, so if you hear a data burst on these channels there must be a train nearby, probably within about 2-3 miles. 

  • 452.9375 - Head-of-Train Transponder, HOT
  • 457.9375 - End-of-Train Transponder, EOT/FRED

Bote's Railfan Pages

A variety of guides to railfanning on the Florida East Coast Railway including a homemade track chart. Focus is on the Ft. Lauderdale area but has information for along the entire railroad.

Mailing Address

7415 SW 170th Ter
Palmetto Bay, FL 33157-4888

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License Information

The Florida East Coast Railway mark and trade names are the property of the Florida East Coast Railway, L.L.C. and are used under license from the Florida East Coast Railway

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