Employment numbers released by the Surface Transportation Board show Class I railroads employed 160, 119 people in mid-November, down 119 positions (0.08%) from the previous month but up 3.27% from November 2010.
In a letter Friday to “NRC Members and Friends,” National Railroad Construction & Maintenance Association President Chuck Baker hailed the awarding of $5111 million in federal TIGER III grants “to 46 capital construction projects in 33 states,” and noted “when rail projects are considered against other modes in a truly merit-based competition, rail does extraordinarily well!”
Jacksonville, Fla.-based RailAmerica, Inc. Monday announced the upcoming retirement of Charlie Patterson, senior vice president and chief commercial officer. Patterson’s retirement is effective December 31.
Canadian National and the United Steelworkers announced that they have reached a tentative agreement to renew the labor contract for approximately 2,800 maintenance-of-way workers in Canada. The current agreement expires Dec. 31. The ratification vote is expected to take approximately 60 days.
MTA Long Island Rail Road Monday launched a pilot of LIRR Train Time™, a new service providing on-time train status information to passengers. LIRR said riders using the Port Washington Branch may go to mta.info/lirr/TrainTime, enter origin and destination, and “Train Time will then provide upcoming departure times and indications showing whether each train is running on time or, if late, by how many minutes. Train Time also displays scheduled arrival time at the destination station, track assignments at most origin stations, and a chance to click for a list of each upcoming train’s intermediate stops.” Train Time uses real-time train location information provided by a GPS system and LIRR’s signal system. “Its graphic interface is based on the one used by Metro-North Train Time™, a similar service that launched last year., said the railroad. “But because LIRR customers sometimes need to change trains at Jamaica or other stations, the Long Island Rail Road edition of Train Time has added space to show up to two transfers. Outside of Jamaica, the LIRR’s most common transfer points are Babylon, Hicksville, Huntington, Lynbrook, Mineola, Ronkonkoma and Valley Stream. The LIRR is using the Port Washington Branch for the test because the branch does not connect with other branches at Jamaica. The transfer columns will remain blank during pilot release. To the left of these columns, Train Time shows a train’s scheduled arrival time at the selected destination. And next to that, users can click on the “stops” button for each listed trip to view all the intermediate stops made by each train or combination of trains. Train delays are shown in number of minutes late. In keeping with industry-wide standards, trains arriving within 5 minutes and 59 seconds of schedule are listed as on time.
Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority Monday approved service cuts and the elimination of 170 jobs in an attempt to address a $14.7 million budget deficit.
Canadian National has received Toyota Canada’s Carrier of the Year Award for 2011. The award goes annually to the rail or highway carrier that has exhibited the best performance in transit time, quality, and customer service.
Charlotte’s Lynx Blue Line light rail will get an $18 million upgrade, allowing station platforms to be extended to handle three-car trains, boosting system capacity.
Fairport, N.Y.-based RailComm has been selected to provide its wireless remote control automation system at BNSF’s Longview facility in Washington.
Norfolk Southern said Thursday it is proceeding to expand operations at its Rutherford Intermodal Facility near Harrisburg, Pa., following a $15 million TIGER III grant from the federal Department of Transportation.