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New FRA 2-Person Crew Regulation
Apr 03, 2024

BLET President Hall applauds new FRA rule on two-person train crews

APRIL 2, 2024 | 2-man CrewsFRANewsRailroad SafetyTop NewsTrain Length

Statement by Eddie Hall
BLET National President
April 2, 2024

For the past 13 years our union, the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen, has advocated for a federal rule requiring that trains be staffed by a minimum of one certified engineer and a certified conductor. We also have repeatedly tried to reason across the bargaining table for railroads to adopt these minimum staffing requirements. As trains, many carrying hazardous material, have grown longer, crews should not be getting smaller. I personally have operated freight trains that stretched over three miles in length.

Eleven states, concerned about the public’s safety have now instituted a two-person crew requirement. Rail safety legislation now pending in the U.S. Senate also calls for a minimum of two people operating a freight train. Today’s announcement is an important step in making railroading safer in every state, rather than a piecemeal approach. The administration promised to take this action and today it happened.

Freight railroads must keep two person crews, according to new federal regulation

APRIL 2, 2024 | 2-man CrewsFRAHeadlinesNewsRailroad Safety

(Source: Associated Press, April 2, 2024)

Major freight railroads will have to maintain two-person crews on most routes under a new federal rule that was finalized Tuesday. The Federal Railroad Administration released the details of the rule Tuesday morning, after working on it for the past two years.

Rail unions have long opposed one-person crews because of a combination of safety and job concerns. Labor agreements requiring two-person crews have been in place for roughly 30 years at major railroads, although many short-line railroads already operate with one-person crews without problems.

BLET National President Eddie Hall praised the Federal Railroad Administration for taking the step, which marks a milestone in labor’s long fight to preserve two-person crews. President Hall told the Associated Press that keeping two people in the cab of a locomotive is crucial now that railroads are relying on longer and longer trains that routinely stretch miles long. “As trains — many carrying hazardous material — have grown longer, crews should not be getting smaller,” he said.

Full story: Associated Press

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