What is RTA?

The Railway Tie Association was organized in 1919.  Predecessor groups, dating back to the late 1800s, that included The National Association of Railroad Tie Producers, were formed to support the railroad tie industry and to preserve the forest through conservation. See the Wikipedia article here.


To provide the forum and direction for the continual improvement in the life-cycle of the engineered wood crosstie system.


altThe purpose of the RTA  is to promote the economical and environmentally sound use of wood crossties. The Association is involved in research into all aspects of the crosstie industry and ongoing activities dealing with sound forest management, conservation of timber resources, timber processing, wood preservation, and safety of industry workers. 

The RTA is governed by a strict Antitrust Policy and members are reminded not to discuss pricing other than as historical information.

Our objectives include:

Research and Development

Initiate, sponsor, and cooperate with others in research, development, and testing of crosstie design, manufacture, and use.

Industry Statistics

Collect and provide industry production statistics and economic data such as:


Develop, update, and publish specifications covering the quality of wood crossties and switch ties.


Promote and maintain high standards of quality for wood crossties. Reflect the latest proven developments in design and treatment. Provide information about good forestry practices, improved logging methods, and better methods of manufacturing, handling, and processing. Click here for resources and research.

Government Affairs

Support and attend Railroad Day on the Hill in partnership with the AAR, ASLRRA and NRC.

Inform RTA members and others regarding policies and legislative activity affecting the crosstie industry.  Support all efforts to insure the health of the railroad, wood preserving, and sawmill communities.

Related Associations

Cooperate closely with related organizations such as:

       and others.

Annual Technical Conference

Conduct an Annual Symposium and Technical Conference to bring together individuals associated with the wood crosstie industry. The Conference provides a public forum for people to exchange ideas and features speakers who are leaders in the fields of forestry, sawmilling, wood preservation, crosstie use, and disposal.


Support seminars and other educational functions related to crossties. Sponsor scholarships for deserving students who wish to enter the industry. Manage a Wikipedia article about the RTA.


Publish a bi-monthly magazine, CROSSTIES, covering all aspects of the wood crosstie industry.

(Our thanks to the late Doris Day - www.dorisdayphotography.com - for the use of the photo above.)

Why RTA?