April 24, 2014

Previsch, TTD inform lawmakers about Amtrak

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A column by SMART Transportation Division President John Previsich and AFL-CIO Transportation Trades Department President Edward Wytkind informing lawmakers about the public’s support for Amtrak was published April 16 by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. In response to the column, Missouri State Legislative Director Ken Menges told Previsich and Transportation Division National Legislative Director James Stem, [...]

AAR: FCC policies delaying PTC

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WASHINGTON – In a new report updating the industry’s progress on installing positive train control, the nation’s freight railroads said that a year-long moratorium on installing 20,000 communication antennas imposed by the Federal Communications Commission, followed by a lengthy federal approval process mandated by the agency, has seriously delayed the implementation of nationwide interoperable PTC. [...]

Ex-NJT rail chief lands job with N.Y. MTA

NJ Transit’s former railroad chief, who was pushed out in March following two tumultuous years that included the flooding of nearly 400 rail cars and locomotives during Superstorm Sandy, has landed a job within New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority. Kevin O’Connor, the former vice-president of rail at NJ Transit, started April 10 as Metro-North Railroad’s [...]

Rail companies to report fertilizer delivery plans

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) – A federal oversight board told Canadian Pacific Railway and BNSF Railway that they have until Friday to report their plans to ensure delivery of fertilizer shipments for spring planting of U.S. crops. The Surface Transportation Board’s decision Tuesday comes in response to a hearing it held last week on recent service [...]

Hazardous cargo rides rails in secret

Jodi Ross, town manager in Westford, Mass., did not expect she would be threatened with arrest after she and her fire chief went onto the railroad tracks to find out why a train carrying liquid petroleum gas derailed on a bridge in February. But as they reached the accident site northwest of Boston, a manager [...]

Oil traffic may delay fertilizer shipments, farmers warn

Increasing use of railroads to ship crude oil could disrupt fertilizer cargo this spring as Midwest farmers prepare for planting, U.S. agriculture leaders warn, even as one railroad said on Monday (April 14) it will take steps to ensure timely deliveries. The planting season is nearly at hand in states such as the Dakotas and [...]

OSHA orders WC to pay $350,000 to conductor

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MANITOWOC, Wis. – A federal agency has ordered a subsidiary of Canadian National to pay $350,000 to a Wisconsin conductor who was terminated after reporting he’d been hurt on the job. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration announced the fine Thursday against Wisconsin Central Limited railway. Read the complete story at the Star Tribune.

Local chair runs Boston Marathon for cancer research

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On April 21, Local 1951 Chairperson Michael Doherty will be running in his 11th consecutive Boston Marathon to raise money for the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. “I was elected as a board member with the Dana-Farber Institute last year as I was recognized for my commitment and passion to help Dana-Farber find a cure for cancer. [...]

Feds revisit safety rules after Calif. bus crash

RED BLUFF, Calif. – Federal transportation authorities are investigating ways to minimize death and injuries in bus crashes following the fiery wreck leaving 10 dead when a FedEx truck slammed into a bus carrying high school students in Northern California. On Thursday (April 10), the truck driver veered across the Interstate 5 median, sideswiped a [...]

Should the Ryan budget worry seniors?

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A central element of the Congressional Budget process, established in 1974, is that policy proposals affecting the balance between spending and revenues must be scored by a philosophically neutral organization, one created for the purpose of making sure Congress clearly understands the budgetary effect of the legislation brought before it. That duty was given to [...]