UTU Local 867

Email us @ utulocal867@yahoo.com


Crews waiting for transportation - 9/30/2014

In their Hours of Service manual, the FRA has further clarified the issue of how the HOS law applies to train crews awaiting transportation after their hours of service has expired. 

All time after 12 hours on duty is NOT limbo time automatically.  If the deadhead transportation has not been dispatched to pick up the crew when their 12 hours have expired, that is a violation of HOS requirements.

 See below.   


 James Stem 


National Legislative Director

SMART – Transportation Division

304 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE                                        

Washington, DC   20003-1147

   (202) 543-7714

      Fax (202) 544-3024    

         Cell  (202) 256-8021







Crews waiting for transportation


FRA HOS Manual - Page 1-6 (Chapter One, Page 6).  


Activities after 12 hours of time on duty or the 24 hour point in a duty tour.


·        Waiting for and in deadhead transportation from duty to a point of final release is the only allowable railroad-required activity after an employee has 12 hours of time on duty, or after the 24-hour point in a duty tour.  See Chapter 4 of this manual. Deadhead from duty to a point of final release. 


·        A train crew is not waiting for deadhead transportation when;


o   Transportation has not been ordered for the crew, or transportation is available but the crew is required to remain with the train.


Ø In these circumstances, the crew is considered to be monitoring the train (which is commingled service), not waiting for deadhead transportation, and this time will count as time on duty. 



NOTE:  The key to understanding this part of the law (freight) or regulation (passenger) is understanding that  if a train employee is not legitimately waiting on deadhead transportation, that time cannot be considered limbo time.


Example Scenario I  

A crew has expired under the HOS while sitting on a train 50 miles from their release point.  The train is secured, or is not secured, either one.   An FRA inspector is able to document that transportation has not been ordered for the crew.    If the inspector can obtain enough evidence it should be recorded as a defect, or as a recommended violation against the railroad


Example Scenario II

Same scenario as number one above, only the transportation is available (arrives at the train) but the crew is required to stay with the train (usually because the train is unsecured, or a key train requirement).   If the inspector can obtain enough evidence it should be recorded as a defect, or as a recommended violation against the railroad


Guidance I - Relief Crew Arrives

In many cases it will be difficult to establish when transportation was ordered, so an alternate approach is to determine if a relief crew arrived with the crew’s deadhead transportation.  In these cases, if the relief crew was called to report after the relieved crew was past the 12-hour point in their duty tour, then the time from when the relieved crew was at the 12-hour point in their duty tour, to the time the relief crew reported cannot be considered limbo time, because the crew on the train was not waiting for deadhead transportation during this period of time, they were waiting for the relief crew to report. Since EO28 came out, FRA has had many complaints about railroads requiring crews to stay with trains after the 12-hour point in their duty tour, because they were waiting for relief crews to report.  In no way does any regulation or emergency order allow a railroad to disregard the HSL.


Guidance II - Yardmaster requires crew to stay with the train

The most commonly violated aspect of this provision of the HSL, is when a trainmaster or yardmaster requires a train or yard crew to stay on a train, after the 12-hour point in their duty tour, when transportation is readily available at that yard.  Please take exception in these cases. 


Guidance III – Use good judgment – apx 30 minutes or more.     

Finally, inspectors should not be looking into cases where transportation arrives 10 minutes after a train crew expires under the HOS.  Inspectors should, however, investigate cases where a train crew is left on a train for several hours after their HOS has expired, or a crew is left on a train in a yard for more than 30 minutes after their HOS has expired, when transportation is readily available. 

New list of local officers effective 11/6/13 - 11/14/2013


UTU LCA #867 Officers

President: B.A. Dandridge (515) 250-4991

Vice President: E.D. Varvel (515) 710-6451

Secretary/Treasurer: J.A. Biladeau Jr. (515) 681-6520

Local Chairman 225A (Road): R.D. Laborde (515) 238-5423

Local Chairman 225B (Yard): R.E. Martinson (515) 720-7049

Local Chairman 225E (Eng): J.R. Amundson (515) 285-2225

Vice LC 225A: J.S. Todhunter (515) 249-3055

Vice LC 225A: T.M. Babberl (515) 205-4741

Vice LC 225B: J.R. Rhoades Jr. (515) 577-7070

Delegate: R.D. Laborde

Alt. Delegate: J.S. Todhunter

Legislative Rep: R.E. Martinson

Alt. Legislative Rep: J.S. Todhunter

Trustee: T.M. Babberl

Trustee: J.P. Cornwell

Trustee: C.L. Crook

2014 Vacation Info - 11/1/2013

2014 Vacations


If You Are In The Des Moines Trainmen Vacation Grouping, The Only Way To Have Your Vacation Count Is To Leave It In The Vacation Envelope Or Mail It To:

UTU Local #867

1334 Ashworth Rd.

West Des Moines, IA 50265



Check the Vac. Allocation Worksheet that is posted to make sure your vacation is correct. Contact me if you are not on the list or feel there is an error. 24,000 annual miles are needed to qualify for vacation. You have until December 15 to accrue the necessary miles. Once you have completed your vacation request sheet, place it in the envelope or mail it to the address listed above. Vacation requests for 2014 are due by Friday November 29th 2013 and will not be accepted after that date. Set back engineers be sure and bid a trainman's vacation if you were a trainmen during the qualification period. (April 1-Sept 30)


 Thanks, R. Martinson (515) 720-7049

Air tests at Shortline Yard. - 5/28/2013

Air Tests in the yard at Shortline yard.

Air tests in the yard are exclusively the work of the Car Dept Employees.


Class 1 initial terminal air tests are to be performed ONLY by the Carmen per federal regulation. (Where there are Carmen on duty.)

§ 232.205 Class I brake test-initial terminal inspection.

(d) Where a railroad's collective bargaining agreement provides that a Carman is to perform the inspections and tests required by this section, a Carman alone will be considered a qualified person. In these circumstances, the railroad shall ensure that the Carman is properly trained and designated as a qualified person or qualified mechanical inspector pursuant to the requirements of this part.

Transfer tests in the yard are also the car department’s work. However they are not covered by the federal regulation as in the class 1 air brake test. They are covered by the agreement between the Brotherhood of Railway Carmen and the Union Pacific RR.

Appendix M, Article V- coupling, inspection and testing.

“In yards or terminals where Carmen in the service of the Carrier operating or servicing the train are employed and on duty in the departure yard, coach yard or passenger terminal from which trains depart, such inspecting and testing of the air brakes and appurtenances on trains as is required by the Carrier in the departure yard, coach yard or passenger terminal, and related coupling of air, signal and steam hose incidental to such inspection, shall be performed by the carman”

Say you are working a yard/industry job that is required to perform a transfer test on your cars. If your cars are not already set out to a departure track where the Carmen can perform the air test, ask the yardmaster what track they would like you set your cars to for Carmen to perform the air test. You might be told that no departure track is available. You might be told that the Carmen are not available or that they are busy. If  the yardmaster instructs you do your own air test in the yard, write down the date, time, job ID, track, number of cars you tested and the name of the yardmaster that instructed you to perform the test on a piece of paper and put it in the white UTU box under the display cases in the yard office.

I will submit them to the car department representative for claims processing. It is their work under their agreement. Thanks for your help.

In unity

R. Martinson

Email From GC Reedy - 2/16/2013

Received an email from the GC Reedy about the use of electronic devices. It contains a report from the NTSB concerning a head-on collision in 2010 in Minnesota. I urge you to closely review the “Recommendations”. The use of electronic devices has been identified as a contributing cause of accidents. (Not unlike the abuse of drugs and alcohol.) Eliminating such use is quickly gaining priority as a goal of the carriers as well as the regulatory agencies. At your meetings, in the workplace, impress upon our members and other employees the serious implications of the improper use of electronic devices. If the incidence of improper use continues, we will likely see some or all of the “Recommendations” of the NTSB become reality. Worst case, a prohibition on possession could be implemented (not unlike drugs and alcohol).

Unless we wish to face the restrictions and invasions listed in the “Recommendations”, then it needs to also be our goal to eliminate the improper use of electronic devices. Thank you.

Attached is a copy of the report.



Welcome to the website for  UTU Local 867

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Monthly Meetings---1st Wednesday of each month at 7pm @ the Machinist Hall 2000 Walker St. Des Moines, IA

In their Hours of Service manual, the FRA has further clarified the issue of how the HOS law applies to train crews awaiting transportation after their hours of service has expired. In the news.


Added a claim packet that is available in the downloads section. It has a list of the yard and road claims and specific wording to help you type it in.

Mark your Calendars. The 2014 UTU picnic will move this year from Easter Lake to the Union Labor Park at 4640 NW Morningstar Drive, Des Moines, Iowa 50313. The picnic will be held on Saturday July 12th Food, drinks and table service will be provided. 11am until ??? (food will be served at noon)

Vacation Results for 2014 posted in downloads section.

New list of local officers effective 11/6/13

Vacation info and forms for 2014 are posted in the yard office and available for download here. Forms are due by Friday November 29th. 










 If you are furloughed or on the AWTS board you need to call the RRB and apply for unemployment benefits.

You may qualify for benefits even if you are getting a check from the railroad.

It can also help you fulfill the waiting period.


Location Federal Building, Room 921
210 Walnut Street
Des Moines, IA 50309-2116
Hours 9:00 AM THRU 3:30 PM
Monday through Friday except Federal Holidays
Telephone (515) 284-4344
Fax (515) 284-4616