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Union Pacific Railroad's Kelli Dunn recently was named one of the St. Louis Business Journal’s 25 most-influential business women.The publication recognizes women who have helped grow the St. Louis business community while making a difference with local charities and nonprofit organizations.Dunn was promoted to superintendent of transportation services for the St. Louis Service Unit in December 2013. She is responsible for leading safety and transportation operations across 1,900 miles of track in Missouri and Illinois.Dunn previously was general director of transportation planning and scheduling. She began her UP career in marketing and sales and moved to operations in 2005, where she held various posts associated with the Northern Region, crew management system and network planning.Meanwhile, UP also announced it achieved a record-low 2.95 reportable rail equipment incident rate for the year's first half, down 4 percent compared with the same 2013 period. The previous first-half record of 3.01 was set in 2010.The rail equipment incident rate is calculated using the number of reportable derailments per million train miles.Over the past 10 years, UP has taken a number of prevention and risk-reduction measures to reduce the ratio, such as by using lasers and ultrasound technology to identify rail defects; forecasting potential failures by tracking wheels' acoustic vibration and wheel bearings' heat trends; performing a real-time analysis of every rail car each time it passes a trackside sensor; and training employees to better identify risks and prevent derailments.UP also announced it's in the midst of a $6 million project aimed at bolstering a line between Burt and Goldfield, Iowa. Work began July 25 and is scheduled for completion by mid-October.Crews will replace 33,000 ties, install 13,300 tons of ballast and renew surfaces at 66 grade crossings.
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