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  • 9
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  • Fred C Dobbs
    3:26pm - Thu May 10th, 2012
    Fired huh
    I will wait a few months until the union gets them their job back with pay of course.
    { "Agree":"1","Funny":"1","Insightful":"1","Disagree":"-1","Offensive":"-1","Troll":"-1" }
  • TheAngryAdmin
    7:29am - Fri May 11th, 2012
    No go there
    "The worker was fired because of failing to follow standard safety procedures."

    Most Unions will, if proven to be the case, not stand by a worker who does this. It's bad for them. If there is proof the guy didn't follow safety protocol, the Union won't fight the termination.
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  • rita.skeeterr
    4:04pm - Thu May 10th, 2012
    Local 689 Sucks
    Dobbs you are so right. Local 689 will get the fired employee their job back. A metro employee can kill a passenger and the union will support the killer.
    { "Agree":"1","Funny":"1","Insightful":"1","Disagree":"-1","Offensive":"-1","Troll":"-1" }
  • AlanB
    10:12pm - Thu May 10th, 2012
    They have no choice!
    Rita,

    I'm not fan of unions and used to think the same thoughts as you, especially when I'd hear a story of teacher fired to molesting who got his job back thanks to the union and someone's failure to dot the I's and cross the T's.

    But then one day a good friend, now retired from a union, pointed out to me that the US Labor Board requires that the union provide a vigorous defense no matter what. It's just like how someone accused of a crime is entitled to a lawyer no matter what.

    No matter what the union might think about that person, they must mount a defense. If they don't the US Labor Board can disband or fine the union.
    { "Agree":"1","Funny":"1","Insightful":"1","Disagree":"-1","Offensive":"-1","Troll":"-1" }
  • Dakota Rose Paris
    4:30pm - Thu May 10th, 2012
    Really?
    From the article: "When a Blue Line train was given the "all clear" to proceed forward, it fell off the tracks. No one was hurt."

    It fell off the tracks? This sounds like a train set that used to run around our Christmas tree when I was little.

    Good grief.
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  • Kathy K
    8:38pm - Thu May 10th, 2012
    Safety "culture"
    so how do they tell if the safety culture is better than a couple of years ago? It's not. Sorry, it isn't.
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  • Michael B.
    1:04pm - Fri May 11th, 2012
    You are right
    A "safety culture" does not exist just because management says it does. A few more safety-related terminations are just the ticket to get this culture finally established. It's called accountabliity.
    { "Agree":"1","Funny":"1","Insightful":"1","Disagree":"-1","Offensive":"-1","Troll":"-1" }
  • Watcher
    10:02am - Fri May 11th, 2012
    It's like this
    Just like Wall Mart. You get what you hire. Think about it.
    { "Agree":"1","Funny":"1","Insightful":"1","Disagree":"-1","Offensive":"-1","Troll":"-1" }
  • Robert M.
    12:14pm - Fri May 11th, 2012
    This does not bode well for Metro
    There are rules that must be followed before a train can be operated over a switch when that switch is in trouble. Previous articles mentioned that the switch was clamped. That could indicate that the switch point was having trouble staying closed, which is a serious problem.

    Dealing with that problem at a major junction would not be my idea of a fun thing to do. If this worker did not secure the point properly, and if the train derailed passing over it, then there would be grounds for severe discipline. The worker's record should be reviewed to determine whether that includes being fired.

    Metro's statement is a bit troubling.

    . . . He said Metro's safety culture is much better than it was one year ago or two years ago.

    How do you fix something with so many deep rooted problems in a year or two? You can't, unless you have a major shake-up from the top down. Stating that things are better now is not meaningful or encouraging. If a restaurant had 100 people a week getting ptomaine poisoning, and if that number fell to 50, would you want to eat there? I would not.

    Perhaps Metro did review this worker's record. Or perhaps they were looking for a way to convince the public they were on top of things by making an example of them. That would send a chilling message to the rest of the work force, which would then shift to "CYA" mode.

    In June 2009 a failed track circuit went undiagnosed for several days, resulting in a horrendous train wreck, 9 dead people, and dozens of maimed and injured people. In reading the NTSB reports of statements given by several signal maintainers one must question how well Metro is choosing whom to hire and how to train them. Some of those technicians were right on target but several were way out in left field playing football at an ice rink.

    The failures began immediately after an impedance bond was replaced with a new model. According to the NTSB reports the regular workers did not have access to the procedures for the new bonds and there was poor communication between the various crews working on the problem and with their supervisors.

    Worse, no one at Central Control realized the circuit was not dropping when a train passed over it, as might be evidenced by trains in the area losing their identities or by having "phantom" trains with no train ID pop up behind a numbered train. Apparently equipment that watched for just such a problem was either not working or was ignored.

    The problems would seem to be deep rooted. I hope Metro has made some headway on solving them. I ride the trains every day, but never in the end car. I must endure some horribly rough track outbound between Rhode Island Avenue and Silver Spring. The way those trains twist and jerk it is amazing one has not left the rails at high speed.
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