July 28, 2015

Sen. Bernie Sanders addresses SMART

Sanders

Senator Bernie Sanders (D – Vt.) was invited to speak at the SMART Business Agents’ conference, Tuesday, July 28 held at the Washington Hilton, Washington D.C. Watch the video below to hear Sen. Sanders’ speech about the shrinking middle class, the need for improvements in our nation’s infrastructure, the need for trade unions in the [...]

Ryan Edwards dies in CN switching accident

Ryan Edwards (2)

Ryan D. Edwards, 27, of Schererville, Ind. was fatally injured July 25 while performing switching operations at Canadian National Markham Yard in Homewood, Ill. Edwards (Local 1299 of Schererville, Ind.) hired out in August of 2011 as a conductor for CN. Edwards was married and was a father of three children. SMART TD General Chairperson [...]

Senate to debate 3-year delay for rail safety system

capitol

Washington, D.C. — Two months after the high-speed derailment of an Amtrak train killed eight people and injured hundreds more in Philadelphia, a Senate transportation bill headed for debate this week calls for a three-year delay of the deadline for installing a rail safety system that experts say would have almost certainly prevented the Pennsylvania [...]

Aging infrastructure plagues NEC

railyard; train yard; yard

In Maryland, a century-old rail tunnel needed emergency repairs this winter because of soil erosion from leaks, causing widespread train delays. In Connecticut, an aging swing bridge failed to close twice last summer, stopping train service and stranding passengers. And last week, New Jersey Transit riders had a truly torturous experience. There were major delays [...]

Senate to STB: don’t curtail freight rail investment

railyard, train yard; trains

The U.S. Senate recently pointed the way forward for the U.S. Surface Transportation Board (STB) on the issue of ensuring sufficient revenue at freight railroads to pour back into the nation’s infrastructure. The Surface Transportation Board Reauthorization Act of 2015, which was passed by unanimous consent in June, would provide commonsense process improvements. They would [...]

Capping rail revenues will threaten economic goals

Hamberger

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Association of American Railroads (AAR), leaders from its member railroads and economic experts today urged federal regulators to beware of upending numerous national economic goals if they choose to pursue re-instituting revenue caps on freight rail companies. Speaking before a Surface Transportation Board (STB) hearing on railroad revenue adequacy, AAR President and [...]

Second quarter financial results in for Class I railroads

CSX_logo

CSX Corporation announced all-time record quarterly financial results for the second quarter of 2015. Operating income for the railroad came in at more than $1 billion for the first time in company history. The railroad also saw an all-time record in operating ratio of 68.8 percent. Net earnings came in at $553 million or an [...]

SEPTA members ratify pact

SEPTA_logo_150px

Twenty two months ago, SMART  Transportation Division Local 61 (Philadelphia, Pa.) train service members working at SEPTA ratified their contract from the previous round.  Now, for the first time in recent memory, these same members have ratified a new agreement governing the rates of pay and working conditions of conductors and assistant conductors on that [...]

NTSB Study: ECP brakes out-perform other systems

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Washington, D.C. – As part of its ongoing investigation of the derailment of a crude oil unit train in Casselton, North Dakota, the National Transportation Safety Board produced a Train Braking Simulation Study, which it placed into the investigation docket. The study was prompted by recent North American crude oil and ethanol train derailments that resulted [...]

Latest tank car, rail inspections turn up 62 defects

oil-train-rail

Another round of targeted tank car and rail inspections in New York found 62 defects, including one “critical” safety defect that required immediate corrective action, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced on Wednesday. The inspections are part of the governor’s efforts to address the safety of crude-by-rail shipments. State and federal teams examined 524 tank cars and [...]