June 28, 2016

UTU to Congress: Eliminate fatigue, boost safety

WASHINGTON — The single most important action Congress and the Federal Railroad Administration can take to improve rail safety — especially in the movement of hazardous materials — is to eliminate train-crew fatigue and provide predictable start times for train crews. That was the message delivered April 7 to the House Railroad Subcommittee by UTU […]

Worker input crucial to reducing rail risks

If a congressionally ordered railroad risk reduction program is to be effective, the Federal Railroad Administration must include railroad employees and their labor unions in the process of evaluating and managing the program. That is the message seven rail labor organizations sent to the FRA Feb. 8 in response to an earlier FRA notice of […]

UTU rails urged to take survey on sleep, fatigue

An educational website focusing on sleep, sleep disorders and fatigue management is being created in a collaborative effort among the UTU, the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen, the Federal Railroad Administration, sleep medicine experts at Harvard Medical School, and Boston Public Radio station WGBH, which is Public Broadcasting’s largest producer of education  web and […]

Rail safety concerns voiced by UTU members

Train and engine workers are the eyes and ears of railroads — the first to spot trouble, and the first to suffer when trouble occurs. On railroads, trouble too often means career-ending injuries and death. The UTU Rail Safety Task Force was created by UTU International President Mike Futhey to develop strategies to reduce rail-employee […]

UTU working to improve airline safety

By UTU Assistant President Arty Martin Fatigue is a serious problem for pilots and flight attendants. Flight attendants additionally are without protections afforded under the 1970 Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA). The UTU, working with the Transportation Trades Department of the AFL-CIO, as well as the Air Line Pilots Association and the Association of […]

Predictable crew schedules not radical

By UTU International President Mike Futhey For more years than I care to count, we having been telling the carriers that if we couldn’t come up with a mutually acceptable solution at the bargaining table to the problem of availability policies and train-crew fatigue that we were going to ask Congress to impose a solution. […]

A sleep disorder does not mean disqualification

A sleep disorder is a dangerous medical condition; but, in most cases, treatment can be effective. For this reason, a labor-management joint task force has agreed, in writing, that an employee with a treatable sleep disorder who is receiving proper treatment and is otherwise complying with the safety and operating requirements of the job, should […]

New hope for the sleepless

By Norman K. Brown, M.D.UTU Medical Consultant Difficulty getting a good night’s sleep has been a problem of men and women since the beginning of time. Stress, stimulants such as caffeine, illness and irregular work schedules all are well recognized by all of us as causes of insufficient or irregular sleep. Some medical conditions, such […]