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Unions say rails should forgo buybacks and spend on safety


AP Business Writer

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Rail unions want railroads to take some of the billions they’re using every year to buy back their stock and use it to improve safety in the wake of several high-profile derailments and hire more workers. The 12 unions said Friday that collectively the six biggest freight railroads spent over $165 billion on buybacks — well above the $119 billion they spent on upgrading and maintaining their track and equipment between 2015 and last year. At the same time, their safety record worsened as they overhauled their operations to cut costs and eliminated nearly one-third of all rail jobs. Greg Regan with the Transportation Trades Department labor coalition says “the priorities of the railroads are out of whack.”

Article Topic Follows: AP National News

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