Class I railroads are making arrangements to keep in compliance with federal regulations in anticipation of a strike occurring on September 16th. Preparation includes suspending shipments of hazardous materials and security-sensitive shipments. In response to new contract negotiations, 10 out of 12 unions are in position to accept new conditions. The two non-confirmed unions are in position, but not yet committed to strike over not reaching terms they deem acceptable. In attempts to predict and mitigate issues, Norfolk Southern Chief Marketing Officer Ed Elkins has gone ahead to clarify with the public the measures that the railroads will be taking to ensure the safety of shipments and the people tasked with handling them. “We must take steps to ensure we can shut down operations safely if a strike occurs and be positioned to restart quickly when operations resume. Most importantly, we must ensure that no hazardous material or freight that requires special security is left on an unattended train out on the network in the event of a sudden strike,” said Elkins. An article published by Freight Waves outlines the conditions surrounding this potential strike.
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