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Rail News: Labor
FRA sets hearing for SEPTA waiver request on worker-rest rule
The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) has set a Feb. 10 public hearing on a dispute between the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) and its rail employees regarding a safety rule designed to limit fatigue on the job.
SEPTA wants the FRA to renew the authority's waiver of the rule for two years. But Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen (BLET) officials object and want SEPTA to follow the work rule, which involves the time workers spend traveling from home to start work somewhere other than their usual assigned location. SEPTA officials say the the rule, which requires that time to be counted as paid work time, is necessary to limit labor expenses, according to a report on Philly.com.
"Public safety is at risk, so a public hearing is absolutely necessary," said BLET Vice President Steve Bruno in a press release. "We're glad the FRA listened to our request for a hearing, and we believe it's important that it will take place in Pennsylvania, so that panel members can listen to both engineers and passengers."
The hearing will be held in Crum Lynne, Pa. BLET represents 220 locomotive engineers and trainmen at SEPTA.
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