August 1, 2014

FRA to issue proposed rule on minimum train crews

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WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Railroad Administration April 9 announced its intention to issue a proposed rule requiring two-person train crews on crude oil trains and establishing minimum crew size standards for most main line freight and passenger rail operations. The FRA also intends to advance a rulemaking on train securement and [...]

SMART TD delegates must attend both conventions

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In the March issue of the SMART Transportation Division News, we celebrate the 100th birthday of former President Al Chesser, the very first elected president of the United Transportation Union. This is a remarkable achievement for a remarkable man! Brother Chesser’s history of commitment and dedication to this organization and all of organized labor is [...]

FRA issues final rule on critical incident stress plans

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The Federal Railroad Administration issued a final rule requiring certain major railroads to develop critical incident stress plans that provide for appropriate support services to be offered to their employees who are affected by a “critical incident.” Critical incidents refer to events such as a highway-rail grade-crossing accidents or a train striking another employee or [...]

Obama announces second PEB in LIRR dispute

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WASHINGTON – President Barack Obama, March 20, signed an executive order creating a second Presidential Emergency Board to help resolve an ongoing dispute between the Long Island Rail Road and some of its unionized employees. The appointment of a second PEB means that a strike by members of the International Association of Sheet Metal, Air, [...]

Let’s work together to put Fast Track on slow track

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By Joe Nigro, SMART General President – Recent news reports have been bleak when it comes to the status of working families in the United States. While much of the news focuses on unemployment, and rightly so, there’s a relatively unknown, legal way that corporations are going to impact the job market and the wealth of manufacturing [...]

Stem testifies before House subcommittee

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SMART Transportation Division National Legislative Director James Stem testified March 12 before the U.S. House of Representatives Subcommittee on Environment and the Economy. The subcommittee’s hearing was held in regard to Senate Bill S.1009, the Chemical Safety Improvement Act, which would amend the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) to establish an evaluative framework for chemical [...]

SMART Constitution complete, we are moving forward

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By John Previsich, SMART Transportation Division President –  2014 is shaping up to be a remarkable year in the history of our union. The SMART constitution is now finalized and we are moving forward with the ongoing effort to merge our two organizations into one. For those who have not yet viewed the arbitration decision or [...]

Vice President Kerley retires, Ferguson elevated

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Robert D. Kerley, the senior vice president of the Transportation Division of the International Association of Sheet Metal Air, Rail and Transportation Workers, has retired, effective Feb. 28. The vice president vacancy in the Transportation Division will be filled by the elevation of Alternate Vice President Jeremy Ferguson by action of the Transportation Division’s board [...]

N.Y. reps. urge settlement of LIRR dispute

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Twelve members of the U.S. House of Representatives have co-signed a letter to the chairman of New York City’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority urging the MTA to reach a settlement with union employees of the Long Island Rail Road and avert a possible strike by those employees this spring. The letter to MTA Chairperson and Chief [...]

Sen. honors SMART member from N.D. derailment

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WASHINGTON – On the floor of the U.S. Senate, Sen. Heidi Heitkamp Feb. 10 shared the heroic story of Geoff Andersen, an engineer in training for Burlington Northern Sante Fe Railway, from Larimore, N.D., whose actions during the recent train derailment near Casselton, N.D., prevented the dangerous explosions from the crash from spreading farther. (Andersen [...]