Rail Conference challenges NS on security, camp cars

On May 11, at the annual Norfolk Southern (NS) shareholders meeting in Norfolk, Va., representatives of the Teamsters Rail Conference questioned NS Chairman Wick Moorman about security training and camp car issues.

According to news reports, Jeffery Bainter, a member of the Brotherhood of Maintenance of Way Employes Division, asked Moorman why NS was the only railroad that still used converted railcars, so-called camp cars, to shelter track repair workers overnight. Moorman replied he couldn't comment on that issue since it was a subject of ongoing contract talks.

John Murphy, Director of the Teamsters Rail Conference, said that according to the results of the Rail Conference's report, "High Alert: Workers Warn of Security Gaps on Nation's Railroads," many NS employees did not feel prepared for a terrorist attack. Although Moorman said that NS takes security issues "very seriously," he said that he had not seen the report.

"High Alert," which was published in September 2005, details the results of a first-ever railroad worker survey about security and safety conditions on U.S. railroads.

More than 70 percent of the rail workers surveyed reported that they had seen trespassers in their rail yards or on the tracks, and more than 80 percent of the respondents said they had not received any, or additional, training related to terrorism prevention and response in the last 12 months.



© 2006 Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen