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U.S. Class Is, UTU plan remote-control pilot projects


National Wage and Rules Panel members — which include officials of most major railroads and United Transportation Union — Jan. 14 agreed to initiate pilot projects aimed at implementing and utilizing locomotive remote-control technology at various U.S. locations.
UTU and Burlington Northern Santa Fe, Conrail, CSX Transportation, Kansas City Southern, Norfolk Southern Railway and Union Pacific Railroad, which bargain collectively through National Carriers' Conference Committee, Sept. 26 signed a letter of intent, assigning remote-control operations to UTU-represented employees.
"There are a number of issues to be worked out before either side enters into a definitive agreement on remote control," said UTU International President Byron Boyd Jr. in a prepared statement. "Working out those issues first requires that we collect data relating to safety, compensation, job protection, levels of training required, economic impact and other relevant issues."
The National Wage and Rules Panel was established in 1996 to provide a forum for railroads and UTU to discuss complex issues in a non-confrontational manner.

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More News from 1/15/2002