Reported by Bill Stephens for Trains.
The Transportation Trades Department of the AFL-CIO has joined the chorus of organizations asking federal regulators to address Class I railroad service problems.
“It is clear that a lack of oversight has allowed Class I railroads to operate in a manner that is harmful to shippers, employees, and the American public, and these issues will not resolve out of self-regulation by the carriers,” TTD President Greg Regan wrote in a letter sent to the Surface Transportation Board on Monday. “We urge the Board to continue to delve into the service issues faced by shippers, and how these issues have been caused or exacerbated by an overly reduced workforce.”
Regan blames the railroads for crew shortages that have contributed to service problems that have affected shippers, including the National Grain and Feed Association, which wrote to the STB last month. “As NGFA correctly asserts, the scourge of Precision Scheduled Railroading (PSR) looms large in the disruptions its members are currently facing, as well as in the degraded service the freight rail network is providing broadly,” Regan wrote.
The grain shipper group said that severe delays in rail shipments have forced some mills to shut down or curtail production and put livestock and poultry producers at risk of running out of feed. “The notion that our nation’s food supply chain is threatened by the continued negligence and intransigence of the railroad industry is both stunning and unacceptable,” Regan wrote.
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