Minimum crew size bill awaits vote in Washington State Senate


INDEPENDENCE, Ohio, April 16 – The BLET Washington State Legislative Board, in conjunction with the SMART-TD Washington Legislative Board, has been lobbying the Washington State Legislature in support of legislation that would require two qualified crew members on trains operating in the state of Washington. Recently, this legislation (HB 1841) passed the State Assembly and will soon be voted on by the State Senate.

Public safety in regards to hazardous material trains is a driving force behind support of the legislation. Since 2009, Washington State has seen a dramatic increase in hazardous material trains (e.g., highly flammable crude oil and compressed gases). U.S. oil production is expected to increase 25 percent by 2025, and it is expected that much of this oil will be transported by trains. This legislation gives Washington State the capability to require more than two crew members for these types of trains, if it is determined by the state’s Utilities and Transportation Commission (UTC) that doing so would mitigate the risk to public safety when in route to the state’s oil refineries.
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Public Hearing – Senate Labor & Commerce Committee

To All,

On Tuesday, March 26, 2019 at 8:30 am, there will be a Public Hearing held in the Senate Labor & Commerce Committee / Senate Hearing Rm 1- on the Capitol Campus, in Olympia, WA at the John A. Cherberg Building, to provide further testimony in support of HB 1841; Establishing Minimum Crew Size on Certain Trains, (2-Person Crew/Minimum Train Crew Standards).

As the push against our legislation by the carrier and their lobbyists is ever present, we continue to make positive movement through the legislative process.

However, we cannot let ourselves become complacent and allow the safety of the Public and Railroad Labor to be compromised.

As the generations before us, we will spend the majority of our lives out on these rails; all with families to provide for and communities of which we belong.

With the profits of the 7 Class I carriers at an all time high, there is one thing they always seem to forget; and it is something we should continue to remember, “Railroad Labor makes them profitable; it is not the other way around.

Let us keep our interests in mind, so that we may do what we do best – Move the Freight in a safe and professional manner..!

If you have any questions pertaining to the Senate Public Hearing, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Thank you.


Shahraim C. Allen
Washington State Legislative Board
Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen
International Brotherhood of Teamsters – Rail Conference

REVISED SENATE HB 1841 Flyer Final 03-2019