Push for remote control safety continues

44 different communities enact safety resolutions

As this issue of the Locomotive Engineer Newsletter goes to press, 44 communities have enacted remote control safety resolutions, each calling for improved safety regulations to govern the operation of remote control locomotives.

The most recent are: Allen Park, Mich.; Berwyn, Ill.; Irvington, Ill.; Melvindale, Mich.; Redford Township, Mich.; River Rouge, Mich.; St. Louis, Mo.; and Wamac, Ill. In all, 33 cities and 11 counties have enacted remote control safety resolutions.

Allen Park, Mich.

The Allen Park resolution asks the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) to conduct a review of the safety of the technology.

Berwyn, Ill.

The Berwyn resolution, passed on August 12, bans the use of remote control within the city limits. BLE Division 32 (Berwyn, Ill.) member John Parypinski was instrumental in the passage of this resolution.

Irvington, Ill.

The resolution, passed by the Village President and Board of Trustees of Irvington, asks the FRA to develop comprehensive regulations for the use of remote control locomotives.

BLE Illinois State Legislative Board Chairman C.E. Way thanked BLE Division 24 (Centralia, Ill.) Legislative Representative Brad Pearson for his work on the resolution. Chairman Way also thanked William Irwin, Village Clerk of Irvington, and Mike Gaison, Village President, for their help.

Melvindale, Mich.

On November 5, the Melvindale City Council unanimously passed a resolution calling for the FRA to conduct a review of the safety of remote control.

Michigan State Legislative Board Chairman Greg Powell thanked the following people for their assistance in the passage of the Melvindale resolution: Brother Frank Battaglia, Legislative Representative of BLE Division 1 (Detroit); Ray Hernandez, Legislative Representative of BLE Division 831 (Detroit); the BLE members who were involved; and the Melvindale Mayor, City Council and Fire Chief.

Redford Township, Mich.

On November 11, the Township of Redford's Council unanimously passed a remote control safety resolution.

Chairman Powell thanked Brother Battaglia for his work in getting the Redford Township resolution passed. In addition to Battaglia, he thanked the other Legislative Representatives and members in the area for their work. He also thanked Kevin Kelly, the Township Supervisor, and the members of the Township Council for their efforts.

River Rouge, Mich.

The resolution, which unanimously passed on November 5, calls on the Federal Railroad Administration to conduct a review of the safety of remote control operations.

Greg Powell, Chairman of the BLE's Michigan State Legislative Board, thanked Brother Frank Battaglia, Legislative Representative of BLE Division 1 (Detroit), and Dan Cook III, a member of Division 1, and all the members of Division 1, for working to get the resolution approved. Chairman Powell also thanked the Mayor of River Rouge and the City Council for supporting this measure.

Wamac, Ill.

The resolution passed by Wamac, Ill., calls upon the FRA to develop comprehensive regulations for the use of remote control trains.

The effort to pass the resolution was spearheaded by Brad Pearson, Legislative Representative of BLE Division 24 (Centralia, Ill.). BLE Illinois State Legislative Board Chairman C. Edward Way commended Brother Pearson for his efforts. He also thanked Wamac Mayor Edward McGee and City Clerk Marian Suhl.

The resolution stated that the city of Wamac took action to ensure the public safety of its citizens, and seeks to prohibit railroads from using remote control locomotives to transport hazardous materials.

St. Louis, Mo.

The Board of Aldermen in St. Louis, Mo., approved a remote control safety resolution on October 15. The Aldermen cited the amount of hazardous materials moving through their city as one of the reasons that they adopted the resolution. The resolution asks the FRA to review their policies regarding remote control operations.

Missouri State Legislative Board Chairman Mickey Gage presented the BLE's position on remote control locomotives to the Alderman. He was assisted by David Grimes, local chairman of BLE Division 42 (St. Louis). Chairman Gage's daughter, Sarah, also assisted with the presentation.

Total

The 33 U.S. cities with remote control safety resolutions are: Baton Rouge, La.; Detroit, Mich.; Shreveport, La.; Marysville, Mich.; Boston, Mass.; Cleveland, Ohio; Pine Bluff, Ark.; North Little Rock, Ark.; Beardstown, Ill.; Bakersfield, Calif.; Woodbridge, N.J.; Maple Heights, Ohio; Alliance, Neb.; Evansville, Ind.; Dupo, Ill.; Durand, Mich; Flat Rock, Mich.; Woodhaven, Mich; Flint, Mich.; Sparks, Nev.; Commerce, Calif.; Clinton, Iowa; Montebello, Calif.; Saginaw, Mich.; Mankato, Minn.; Wamac, Ill.; St. Louis, Mo.; River Rouge, Mich.; Melvindale, Mich.; Redford Township, Mich.; Irvington, Ill.; Berwyn, Ill.; and Allen Park, Mich.

Also, 11 counties have passed similar remote control resolutions. They are: Douglas County, Wisc.; West Baton Rouge Parish, La.; Point Coupee Parish, La.; Cuyahoga County, Ohio; Huron County, Ohio; Erie County, Ohio; Whitley County, Ky.; Unicoi County, Tenn.; Contra Costa County, Calif.; Knox County, Tenn.; and Clinton, County, Iowa.

On the Internet

For a complete list of all state, county and AFL-CIO resolutions, visit the BLE website at:

http://www.ble.org/remotecontrol

 

 

© 2003 Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers