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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

U.S. Class I workforce shrinks a bit at 2007's start, STB says


The U.S. Class Is ended 2006 with a slightly larger workforce than the one in place at the close of 2005. But a few weeks into 2007, that employment level dropped.

As of mid-January, the Class Is employed a total of 165,411 people, a 1.3 percent decrease compared with mid-December 2006’s level, according to Surface Transportation Board data. The maintenance-of-way (MOW) and structures workforce decreased 2.3 percent, and professional/administrative and transportation (train and engine service) staffs each fell 1.2 percent.

However, the Class Is’ workforce increased 1.2 percent compared with January 2006’s level. So, the large roads remained ahead of last year’s hiring pace.

On a year-over-year basis, the executives/officials/staff assistants segment posted the largest increase, rising 5.2 percent to 10,089. Transportation (T&E service) ranks increased 2.2 percent to 70,991 and the maintenance of equipment and stores workforce inched up 0.9 percent to 30,211 compared with January 2006 levels.

Transportation (other than T&E) ranks decreased 2.2 percent to 7,215, professional/administrative staff declined 0.8 percent to 13,686 and the MOW and structures workforce dropped slightly to 33,219.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 3/23/2007