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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

BNSF, BLE partner to promote safety training, counseling


Burlington Northern Santa Fe and Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers June 24 announced a safety agreement stressing safety training and counseling instead of punitive discipline.

BNSF plans to conduct safety forums at various locations to address
conditions that need to be corrected, replacing the railroad's previous
reporting, cataloguing and investigative process. The railroad also would replace its existing discipline process for non-repetitive and non-serious rule violations with workplace coaching, counseling and retraining.

BLE-represented safety workers then would ensure that the agreement's procedures are being implemented and interpreted uniformly across BNSF's system.

"This agreement, the first of its kind between BLE and a large railroad, represents a fundamental change in our approach to safety for operating employees," said M. David Dealy, BNSF vice president, transportation, in a prepared statement. "Both BLE and BNSF will focus on root-cause analysis and corrective action to prevent injuries caused by behavior, as well as
injuries caused by environmental conditions."

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More News from 6/25/2002