In February 1998, a Switching Operations Fatalities Analysis (SOFA) working group, with representatives from the FederalRailroad Administration (FRA), labor and management was formed at the request of the FRA to reviewemployee fatalities and to develop recommendations for reducing fatalities in switching operations.
The UTU is represented in the SOFA group by Minnesota State Legislative Director Phil Qualy (650) and Kansas State Legislative Director Ty Dragoo (1503).
In an effort to reduce injuries and fatalities, the group recommends that employees practice the following five life-savers:
- Secure all equipment before action is taken.
- Protect employees against moving equipment.
- Discuss safety at the beginning of a job or when work changes.
- Communicate before action is taken.
- Mentor less experienced employees to perform service safely.
(Note: SOFA updates are published quarterly.)
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