When the engineer applies the standard brake-type railroad air brakes the signal can take 15 seconds or longer to move sequentially through the brake pipe to the locomotive to the last car.
This makes controlled braking extremely difficult, especially because equial braking force is applied to both loaded and empty cars. With the new electro-pneumatic braking system, the engineer sends a simultaneous application signal electronically to each car, causing the brakes to be applied proportionally to the car's weight. This gives the engineer complete braking control for greater safety and reduced damage to the freight cars and their contents. Plus, the system charges continuously during braking to maintain maximum braking capacity.