Cell Phone Ban:
Railroad Administration (FRA) regulations on cell phones and other electronic
devices went into effect on
BLET National President Dennis Pierce has warned members nationwide that if they do not comply with the FRA regulations on cell phones and police themselves, they are subjecting themselves to the possibility of the installation of inward-facing cameras on all locomotive cabs. Additionally, the General Chairmen have advised that if an employee is caught with his or her cell phone on, the discipline charge against them is indefensible. In other words, if it is discovered that a crew memberís cell phone was on while the train was moving, that employee is subject to being permanently fired. Crew membersí cell phones must be turned off and stowed any time they are on the train. In a recent fatal rear-end collision involving two BSNF trains, not only were the cell phone records requested by the company for the crews on the trains involved in the collision, but so were the records of the two preceding train crews and the two trailing train crews.
A one-page flyer from the FRA summarizing the new regulations can be found at http://www.ble-t.org/pr/pdf/FRA_Electronic_Devices_Chart.pdf.