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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

STB: U.S. Class I workforce slips below 150,000 in September


The U.S. Class I workforce not only shrank for the second-straight month in September, it fell below 150,000 for the first time in many months. As of mid-September, the workforce stood at 149,428, down 0.4 percent from mid-August’s level and 7.9 percent from September 2008’s count, according to Surface Transportation Board (STB) data.

The transportation (other than train and engine) staff of 6,515 registered the largest month-over-month decline at 2.5 percent. The workforce segment also decreased 1.3 percent from September 2008’s level. Transportation (train and engine) ranks that totaled 56,592 in mid-September dropped 1 percent from mid-August’s count and a whopping 14.3 percent from September 2008’s level.

At 13,700, professional and administrative staff represented an increase of 1.6 percent on a month-over-month basis and 1.3 percent on a year-over-year basis. However, executives, officials and staff assistants numbered 9,194, down 1 percent from mid-August’s level and 8.8 percent from the year-earlier count.

Maintenance of equipment and stores ranks increased 0.3 percent from mid-August’s level to 28,326, but decreased 6 percent from September 2008’s count.

For more breakdowns of the STB’s most recent employment data, follow this link to download a pdf file of September figures.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 10/21/2009