Rail union rejects Biden deal, sets stage for December strike


Rail union rejects Biden deal, sets stage for December strike

One of the country’s largest railroad unions, SMART Transportation Division, has voted to block the new wage deal brokered by the White House.

  • The Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen has voted to ratify the agreement but said it will honor the picket line with other unions that voted against the deal.
  • The two groups represent around 60,000 railroad workers, more than half the 115,000 workers covered by the current negotiations.
  • This pushes the total to five unions who are back at the negotiating table. If they don’t come to a new agreement, workers would be allowed to strike as early as Dec. 4.
  • Railroad workers who voted against their agreement said wages weren’t the reason for their decision.
  • Their grievance is about working conditions. They say punitive attendance policies and insufficient staffing have left them overworked.
  • The U.S. economy would lose $2 billion each day railroad workers are on strike, the AAR estimated. The country’s economic output averages around $63 billion each day.


Dunavant continues to monitor the situation and is positioned to offer a transloading and/or over the road trucking services if a rail strike does occur. Please contact your Dunavant representative if you have any questions regarding the rail strike or solutions to keep your loads moving.

Posted by Katie Elizabeth Carpenter at 08:57