Rail union calls for more extensive conductor training following 2 deaths

Following two recent deaths involving conductor trainees, the union representing train conductors is calling for more stringent training than what’s being offered now at the freight railroads, according to an internal safety advisory produced by the union.

The call for action by the International Association of Sheet Metal, Air, Railroad and Transportation Workers – Transportation Division (SMART-TD) was spurred by the two deaths of conductor trainees that occurred within 60 days of each other this summer. Both fatalities happened at Eastern U.S. Class I railroad CSX (NASDAQ: CSX)…

CSX, the National Transportation Safety Board and others are still looking into what caused the incidents, but the Aug. 16 FRA safety bulletin suggests that at least one of the incidents occurred when a conductor trainee was crushed between a rail car and locomotive during a shoving movement at a rail yard.

The union said it created its own internal advisory to promote dialogue between conductors and their trainees.