Tri-State railroad worker reacts to unions making tentative agreement to stop strike
EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WFIE) - Railroad unions went to bat for the roughly 60,000 employees they represent, arguing for improved wages, time off and scheduling.
Bruce Knight worked with CSX for over 20 years.
He now owns his own railyard and works on locomotives at his business, Mid-America Locomotive and Car Repair.
Knight says he’s glad the railroads have reached a tentative agreement, but something permanent and ratified needs to come down soon, especially if they’re hoping to attract new workers and retain quality ones.
“It’s caught up with them now, and there’s not enough people out there to get it done quick enough to get out of this hole we’re in,” says Knight, “so I can see the struggles everybody’s having.”
He says the railroad isn’t for the faint of heart.
People work long hours, it can be dangerous and you’ll often be spending time away from family, but it’s all necessary for the economy to function.
“The goods, you know the corn and grain that you need for the food industry and for fertilizer for the growing. If they do a long-term shutdown, it’d be the same detrimental issues we had before, and everything would come to a screeching halt,” says Knight.
Knight has spent his entire career either working on the railroad or around it, and he says he’d love to see the unions and workers land on something that benefits everyone.
“It would be great because it helps everybody family-wise and everything you know? For your schooling, for you supporting your kids and everything, to have children. It would all help,” says Knight.
This agreement is tentative, and still needs to be ratified.
However, railroads across the country are expected to be operational Friday.
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