April 18, 2014

BNSF UTU member killed in yard accident

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — A BNSF Railway yard worker, Thomas F. Bleyenberg, a member of UTU Local 5, Kansas City, Mo., was killed Mon., Aug. 15, when he became trapped between two rail cars at the carrier’s Argentine Yard here. 

Bleyenberg was working a two-person remote control assignment with a third student-operator, according to reports.

Bleyenberg, 52, of Independence, Mo., was pronounced dead at the scene, according to the Associated Press. He had been a UTU member since 1994. 

Bleyenberg is the seventh UTU member killed in an on-duty accident in 2011, the fourth in a yard accident, and the fourth in fewer than 30 days.

The National Transportation Safety Board, assisted by the UTU Transportation Safety Team, is investigating.

Local 5 officers are organizing a “Christmas in October” on Oct. 8 to help Brother Bleyenberg’s family, to give a little TLC to their house and property, Missouri State Legislative Director Ken Menges reports.

Local 5 Legislative Rep. Curt Jones says the Bleyenburg house needs a little painting and winterizing and this event will give a chance for all Tom’s friends and union brothers and sisters to do something that the family will remember for a lifetime. 

If anyone would like to help or donate please contact Curt Jones at molocal_5@yahoo.com or State Legislative Director Ken Menges at moutu@embarqmail.com or call (573) 634-3303.