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Rail random alcohol, drug test-rate static for 2013
From UTU................Random alcohol and drug testing rates for railroad workers in safety sensitive positions will remain at the same rate during 2013 as 2012.The Federal Railroad Administration said that because the random alcohol testing violation rate has remained below 0.5 percent for the...
Amtrak Chair Carper gains boost from Senate leader
From UTU.......Amtrak Board Chairman Tom Carper has won endorsement from Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) for renomination by President Obama. That nomination would require Senate confirmation.Carper, a former mayor of McComb, Ill., has served on the Amtrak board since March 2008 and...
Caltrain pact protects UTU members in changeover
In preparation for a new operator of Caltrain commuter service in Northern California, the UTU has moved to protect its members who choose to transfer from Amtrak to the new operator.Caltrain operates south from San Francisco to San Jose and Gilroy.TransitAmerica Services, Inc. (TASI), a...
Restricted speed: A warning not to be ignored
From the UTU.............................As most railroaders can attest, there are times that procedures and operating rules set by the FRA or imposed by carriers can be difficult to understand. The language may seem vague, and the ballast-level application often is left up to interpretation,...
Transport labor urges ‘no tinkering’ with RLA
The UTU and 17 other transportation labor organizations urged Congress Jan. 30 to pass a Federal Aviation Administration reauthorization without making what they called “drastic and unnecessary changes to the Railway Labor Act.”Historically, any changes to the Railway Labor Act have been...
Rails to scrap controversial safety award
UTU reports................................It has taken more than a decade for railroads to connect the dots and recognize that their annual Harriman Safety Award contest, which tied managerial bonuses to low reportable injury rates among workers, was creating an unfortunate incentive for...
Two new rail agreements ratified
 WierTwo new UTU negotiated rail agreements have been ratified by members.UTU-represented trainmen and engineers employed by Evansville & Western Railroad overwhelmingly ratified a new five-year agreement, while UTU-represented trainmen and engineers employed by Iowa Interstate Railroad...
Proposed legislation spurs rail agreements
WASHINGTON — In the face of bipartisan get-tough-with-labor legislation introduced in the House and Senate, two of the remaining unions without national rail contracts agreed to a tentative settlement Dec. 1, and a third reached agreement with the carriers Dec. 1 to extend a cooling-off period...
Update on Amtrak negotiations
Amtrak General Chairperson Dirk Sampson (GO 769), issued the following update on wage, benefits and work rules negotiations with Amtrak:“In continuing contract talks with Amtrak, we are striving to obtain an equitable agreement for our members.“We recently sent a letter to Amtrak President...
UTU pact sweet as health care premiums soar
The UTU’s ratified national rail contract – locking in for six years a $200 monthly health care insurance premium — is looking even more attractive following a Kaiser Family Foundation study showing health care costs and health care premiums are rocketing into space.Nationally, the average...

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