May 5, 2015

Treasurers’ workshop scheduled for Feb. 23-25

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The SMART Transportation Division is conducting a second local treasurers’ workshop at its headquarters in North Olmsted, Ohio, Feb. 23-25. The treasurers’ workshop scheduled for Feb. 18-20 is full. Attendance is limited to 25 registrants. If demand for the workshop is high, another workshop will be scheduled shortly after. Those interested in attending the workshop should [...]

Foxx names Feinberg acting administrator of FRA

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WASHINGTON – U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx announced today that Department of Transportation Chief of Staff Sarah Feinberg will serve as Acting Administrator of the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA). She succeeds Joseph C. Szabo who was appointed and confirmed as the agency’s twelfth Administrator is 2009. Szabo stepped down as the agency’s head last Friday. [...]

OSHA’s guide for winter weather

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Winter weather creates a variety of hazards that can significantly impact everyday tasks and work activities. These hazards include slippery roads and surfaces, strong winds and environmental cold. Learning how to prepare for work during the winter, protect workers from the cold and other hazards that can cause illnesses, injuries, or fatalities, is essential to [...]

Are rail ‘special duty’ jobs really that special?

What should union members know before accepting an offer from the railroad to work on a “special duty” assignment? For starters, “special duty” assignments are generally not positions covered by the agreement with your union. If “special duty” assignments are not covered under your agreement, then you should understand that you do not have the [...]

SMART presents its first constitution and ritual

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We are pleased, as your general president and transportation division president, to present the first SMART Constitution and ritual to our membership. This is a milestone for both the former Sheet Metal Workers’ International Association and the United Transportation Union, that have merged to become the International Association of Sheet Metal, Air, Rail and Transportation [...]

AAR issues rail safety alert

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The Association of American Railroads has issued a safety alert for all railroads in North America. The safety alert is to advise of the recent discovery of barbed wire found on safety appliances of a multilevel car. This photograph was taken in the Quebec City, Quebec, area on March 26. “Please distribute this information to [...]

FRA issues new report on fatigue

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The Federal Railroad Administration has issued a new report on the status of fatigue among railroad industry employees. In 2001, the FRA began examining the fatigue status of safety-critical railroad employees by using logbooks to collect work and sleep data over a period of two weeks from a representative sample of employees in each group. [...]

Agreements ratified on Gary Railway

Wier UTU-represented yardmen, hostlers and yardmasters employed by Gary Railway and members of UTU Local 1383 have ratified separate six-year agreements. The contracts provide for annual wage increases, lump-sum percentage back-pay, improved bereavement leave, sickness/disability insurance and a reduced monthly health and welfare contribution. Also included is enrollment in the Transtar insurance benefit program. UTU [...]

EJ&E yardmasters, hostlers ratify new agreements

Wier UTU-represented yardmasters and hostlers employed by the Elgin, Joliet and Eastern Railway have ratified separate new six-year agreements by overwhelming majorities. The new agreements provide for annual wage increases and back-pay; establish 401-k retirement plans, disability insurance and prior rights; increase life insurance; and place those members under the national railroad health and welfare [...]

IC yardmasters have tentative pact

UTU-represented yardmasters employed by Canadian National Railway’s Illinois Central Railroad have reached a new tentative agreement following mediation assistance from the National Mediation Board. A March tentative agreement was rejected by the membership, which will now vote, through Sept. 15, on the new tentative pact. Negotiations were led by UTU International Vice President Paul Tibbit [...]