November 26, 2014

Member from Los Angeles Metro attacked Nov. 17

On the night of Nov. 17, a member of the SMART Transportation Division employed by Los Angeles Metro was brutally assaulted while operating a bus in the West San Fernando Valley. On Nov. 24, Los Angeles Metro and the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department held a joint press conference at 1 Gateway Plaza in Los [...]

FRA issues advisory on roadway worker authority

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WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) Nov. 25 issued a safety advisory to the rail industry to better protect rail employees working on active tracks, or right-of-ways, under the supervision of a dispatcher. “Clear communication is critical to keeping employees out of harm’s way,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. [...]

Amtrak delivers strong FY 2014 financial results

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Amtrak Nov. 25 reported unaudited record revenue totaling approximately $3.2 billion for the fiscal year ending Sept. 30, 2014, representing the fifth consecutive year of revenue growth, and the eighth out of the past nine years. In FY 2014, America’s Railroad® covered 93 percent of its operating costs with ticket sales and other revenues, up [...]

Lipinski on track with new rail policy post

Rep. Dan Lipinski, D-Chicago, is poised to become the highest-ranking Democrat on a House subcommittee on railroads at a time when issues involving Metra and Amtrak will be barreling down the track next year. His Southwest Side turf has more rail lines than any congressional district in the country, or so he claims. “No one [...]

Rails sound alarm ahead of Chicago gridlock replay

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With last week’s 7 feet of snow in upstate New York heralding an early winter, railroads crisscrossing Chicago are rushing to open 24-hour command centers, install heaters to keep switches from freezing, and plotting ways to reroute traffic. The aim is to avoid the gridlock that started with storms last winter in Chicago, the biggest [...]

Gun raffle to benefit Mich. SLD’s daughter

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Kelsey Gibson, daughter of Michigan State Legislative Director Jerry Gibson, was in a near-fatal accident in January 2013 when she was broadsided by a pickup truck in heavy fog. Kelsey’s injuries were extensive and included a long hospitalization. It was reported in May 2013 that Kelsey was awake, but she had a long road to [...]

BNSF announces $6B capital expenditures for 2015

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BNSF Railway Company (BNSF) today announced that its planned capital expenditures for 2015 will be $6 billion, which will go toward maintenance and expansion of the railroad in order to meet the expected demand for freight rail service. The 2015 plan marks the third year in a row that BNSF has committed a record amount [...]

Transportation Division sets 2015 regional meetings

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The SMART Transportation Division has set the dates and locations of the union’s two 2015 regional meetings. The western regional meeting will be held June 29 – July 1 at the Arizona Biltmore in Phoenix. The eastern regional meeting will be held July 13-15 at the Rhode Island Convention Center in Providence. Accommodations will be [...]

NTSB recommends better sleep disorder screening

Federal regulators who concluded that an engineer’s sleep apnea caused a deadly train derailment in New York adopted several recommendations Wednesday for better screening of such disorders, including a call for improved physician training. The National Transportation Safety Board, meeting in Washington, approved all the conclusions and recommendations in a staff report that examined five [...]

NS continues actions to boost performance

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An acceleration of resource additions, coupled with the annual volume decline after Thanksgiving, should provide incremental improvements in train performance and terminal fluidity heading into next year, Norfolk Southern Corp. officials said in a service update posted on the Class I’s website on Monday. “As severe winter weather will have an adverse impact to operations, [...]