Union, US railroads reach early labour agreement

24 January 2008 21:11  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS news)--The major US freight railroads and the United Transportation Union (UTU) have reached a tentative agreement on a new contract that covers wages, benefits and other worker issues, a group representing the employers said on Thursday.

Railroads transport more than 20% of chemicals produced in the US.

The agreement still needs approval from the members of the union, said the National Carriers' Conference Committee, which represents the railroads in their negations with the UTU and other unions.

The UTU represents about 46,000 railroad employees, about a third of the industry's unionised workforce. The union and the railroad companies have been negotiating for three years.

The agreement calls for a 17% wage increase that is retroactive to 1 January 2005, and it will last through 31 December 2009.

By: Al Greenwood
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