Page images

The Carrier, on the other hand, contends that a logical and realistic appraisal of the factual situation, viewed in conjunction with applicable contract provisions and principles repeatedly enunciated by the First Division, clearly and definitely refutes every contention advanced by the Employes. In presenting argument and evidence in support of its position, the Carrier proposes to show that:

[ocr errors]

1. Weather conditions and physical limitations of the terminal combined to necessitate a double-over by the outbound road crew.

[ocr errors]

2. Such double-over was permissible under applicable contract provisions.

3. Previous awards of the First Division support the position of the Carrier.



[ocr errors]

The physical limitations of North St. Louis yard will be readily apparent from the brief reference to track capacity contained in the Carrier's Statement of Facts. Because of the short tracks in the outbound yard it has been the general practice to make up longer trains on the so-called train lead track, shoving out onto No. 4 yard running track to the extent necessary to accommodate the train on this combination of tracks. Such handling is highly desirable, since it avoids the delay, both to the outbound train itself and switching operations in general, that would result from the road crew doubling their train together. The entire outbound switching lead would be blocked while the road crew doubled over, made standard air test and departed, thus seriously delaying yard operations. When long trains are made up on the train lead track and shoved out onto No. 4 yard running track, no doubleover is necessary and there is no interference with lead switching.

Due to severe snow and sleet storm and accompanying low temperatures prevailing for two days preceding the date of claim, many switches in North St. Louis yard were rendered inoperative. While all available force was used in clearing the switches most frequently used, it was found on the night of January 6, 1950, shortly prior to the departure of train No. 61, that the switch of East Yard No. 1 track, which connects into No. 4 yard running track, was frozen and inoperative. This fact was discovered under the following circumstances: At about 8:00 P. M. the Wiggins Ferry Company reported 22 cars for the CB&Q, some of which were perishable cars for train No. 61. The CB&Q yardmaster instructed the Wiggins Ferry crew to use East Yard No. 1 track in making this delivery, as he expected to make up train No. 61 on the train lead track and shove out onto No. 4 yard running track. At about 8:30 P. M. the Wiggins Ferry foreman called from the south end of the yard and reported that the switch leading off No. 4 yard running track to East Yard No. 1 track was frozen. He was then instructed by the CB&Q yardmaster to come up No. 4 yard running track into the outbound yard and, since it was necessary for the Wiggins Ferry crew to return with cars via the same route, it was necessary to change the plan of making up train No. 61 and require the outbound road crew to double over from No. 6 track in the outbound yard to the train lead track.

It will be noted that the Employes do not agree with the Carrier's statement that the frozen and inoperative switch contributed to the necessity of the road crew doubling their train together, and attach a letter from the Local Chairman purporting to support their position in this respect. It would appear from Employes' Exhibit No. 1 that the Local Chairman is talking about a different switch than the one reported inoperative by the Wiggins Ferry crew; however, the dictates of common logic, plus the responsibility of local supervision to exercise good judgment in planning and expediting yard operations, make it unnecessary to unduly labor any conflicting argument as to whether

or not a frozen switch contributed to the double-over on the part of the road crew.

By the statement immediately preceding, the Carrier means simply this: For reasons previously explained, it is decidedly to the advantage of the Car rier to make up train No. 61 intact by using the train lead track and No. 4 yard running track, thus avoiding delay to the outbound train and to yard operations in general that results when necessary for the road crew to double their train together prior to departure. Obviously, therefore, the reason for using a combination of tracks to make up the train intact is to expedite the departure of the train and avoid blocking the lead and interfering with the work of yard crews while the road crew doubles the train over. Since it is highly advantageous to the Carrier to make the train up on the aforesaid combination of tracks, it is certain that local supervision, responsible for overall efficiency of operation, would have made train No. 61 up in that manner on the date in question unless there were very compelling reasons precluding such handling. The right and responsibility of Carrier management to meet service requirements in the most practicable manner has long been recognized by the Board, perhaps most recently in Award 13403, wherein it is stated:

First Division Award 13403 (BLE vs. ACL, Referee Whiting)

“The Carrier's management has the responsibility and right to determine what the necessity of the service requires and so long as its determinations are not shown to be arbitrary, capricious or discriminatory we should not substitute our judgment for that of the Carrier."

The allegation near the bottom of Page 1 of the Employes' submission that "the move made on January 6, 1950, was made for convenience in yard switching" is an illogical assertion which completely disregards the practical aspects of the situation. The fact that a combination of two tracks is used for the purpose of making up these longer trains when conditions permit indicates very clearly where the convenience lies, and stands as irrefutable evidence that the double-over of train No. 61 by the road crew on January 6, 1950, and the delays incident thereto, was a necessity by reason of the physical limitations of the yard, contributed to by prevailing weather conditions, and was not "for convenience in yard switching."



While the Employes party to this dispute have quoted Article 1(c) of the Road-Yard Switching Agreement in an attempt to support their claim, apparently on the premise that the road freight engine crew was required to switch at a point where a yard crew was on duty, they make no mention of the provision of the same agreement which specifically applies to the circumstances. The Carrier here has reference to Article 1(f) of the Road-Yard Switching Agreement, which reads as follows:

"Doubling over where there is no track available, or reserved for the reception or make-up of another train, of sufficient length to hold the entire train in the yard ordinarily used is not switching and may be done by road crew."

From the Statement of Facts incorporated in the submissions of each of the parties, it will be evident that there is no track in the outbound yard at North St. Louis of sufficient length to hold a 120 car train, and that there is no dispute between the parties in this respect. Since the parties are in complete agreement that there was no track available of sufficient length to hold the entire train, the circumstances fall squarely within the provisions of Article 1(f), supra. Article 1(f) provides, in language that defies misconstruction, that doubling over when there is no track available of sufficient length to hold the entire train, is not switching and may be done by road crew. Since doubling over by the road crew in circumstances such as those here involved is permissible and does not constitute switching, Article 1(c), which pertains to switching by road freight engine crews, has no possible application to the instant case.


Attention is also directed to the fact that the primary purpose of Article 1(c) is to provide a basis of compensation for road freight ongine crows who perform switching at points where yard crew is on duty. The subordinate clause at the conclusion of Article 1(c) with respect to payment to engineer and fireman first out on the extra list, is obviously contingent upon the performance of switching by a road freight engine crew. Stated in another way, when there is no switching performed by a road crew there is no basis in Article 1(c) for claim in behalf of extra men. The absence of any claim or protest from the road crew operating train No. 61 on the date of claim indicates that the road crew recognized the propriety of doubling over under the circumstances and realized that such movement did not constitute switching within the meaning of Article 1(c). As a matter of fact the circumstances, viewed in the light of Article 1 (f), permit no other conclusion, but the recognition of these obvious facts by the road crew performing the service helps to illustrate the precarious and untenable position of the Employes in pressing the claim of the extra engineer and fireman named herein.

Another interesting inconsistency manifests itself in the contentions advanced by the Employes. Their primary contention is that it would have been possible to make up train No. 61 intact by using a combination of tracks. However, had the train actually been made up in that manner, the work of making up the train would have been performed entirely by yard crews then on duty. Since it was not feasible to make up the train intact by using the combination of tracks, it was necessary for the road crew to double over. The point the Carrier is trying to make is that in neither event would it be necessary to call an extra engineer and fireman to perform any service; there fore it cannot be argued that the claimants were deprived of any work.



The issue herein presented to the Board is not a new one, since the entire question of road crews doubling over, either after arrival on inbound trains or prior to departure on outbound trains, has been the subject of numerous awards rendered by the First Division. Consequently this dispute presents nothing new or novel, and it is believed that principles consistently adhered to by the First Division in adjudicating disputes involving this question, applied to the instant circumstances, unequivocally support the position assumed by the respondent Carrier.

The only reference to previous awards in the submission of the Employes is their attempt to lift one sentence from the Findings of Award 2458 and apply that isolated sentence to a totally different factual situation than the one which prompted its utterance. Award 2458 covered the claim of a train crew required to hold onto 32 cars and pull same to clear crossover after stopping in the clear on receiving track at final terminal. Instructions covering such handling were transmitted to the train crew by message received at an intermediate point. In order that there be no misunderstanding as to the basis upon which the claim was sustained, the entire Findings are quoted · hereinbelow:

First Division Award 2458 (ORC-BRT vs. D&RGW, no referee)

[ocr errors]

“The evidence of record shows that the movement upon which this claim herein is predicated was arranged by the yardmaster per instructions issued by him to complainant crew in advance of arrival of train. It is therefore held that the movement made was for convenience in yard switching, and such moves have heretofore been held to be yard switching; therefore, claim is valid."

When the complete findings set forth above are viewed in the light of the totally different factual situation present in the instant controversy, it will be apparent that Award 2458 offers nothing whatever in support of the Employes' contentions in the premises. The fact that the movement made in Award 2458 was held to be for convenience in yard switching certainly does not prove that the double-over by the road crew in the instant case was for that purpose.

One of the earlier awards of the First Division dealing with the subject of road crews doubling their train over was Award 822, which considered a dispute on this property involving claim of a train crew for additional compensation account doubling

their train together before departure. The rule in evidence permitted double-over where one track would not hold the train, and the Board denied the claim, stating:

First Division Award 822 (ORC-BRT vs. CB&Q, no referee)

“The evidence in this case shows that neither track 13 nor 24 would hold the train and the movement involved in this particular case was a doubleover within the meaning of Rule 34."

In denying claims for additional compensation in behalf of engineers and firemen in road service who were required to double over from one track to another prior to departure, the Board made the following comprehensive ob servation in the Findings of Award 3153:

First Division Award 3153 (BLE-BLF&E vs. IC, Reforee Swacker)

" 'Doubling over' is a well understoud term. When a train arrives at its terminal and it is too long for the assigned track to hold it, the usual practice is to cut off sufficient of the head end to clear and the road crew moves the head end to another track. Likewise when a train to depart is made up by a yard crew and it is too long to be accommodated on one track, the balance is placed on another, and when the road crew comes to take the train, it couples onto the head end and moves over and couples onto the balance of the train.

“Precisely the same moves may be made, not because of insufficient track room but to accomplish some other objective; in that case, however, generally it is not termed 'doubling over', but rather 'setting out or 'picking up' of certain cars. Both are, of course, switching as a matter of fact. But, commonly under terminal switching rules it is understood, as here provided, that 'doubling over 'will not be considered switching', i. e., so as to be subject to allowance therefor which it otherwise would be. In the one case the move is of necessity and for that no allowance is made; in the other case, the move is in the process of accomplishing some other work and for that the allowance is made."

The statements made in the foregoing quotation with respect to road crews doubling over were reafirmed by the First Division in Award 3633.

Award 3698 denied claim of a road crew for a day's pay for doubling over outbound train, in which the Employes contended the track would have held the entire train. The Carrier contended that placing the entire train upon one track would have blocked crossovers and interfered with yard operations. In denying the claim, the Board stated:

First Division Award 3698 (ORC-BRT vs. B&O, Referee Swacker)

“This was a necessary double. Although the track was long enough to hold the whole train it could have been done only by

blocking crossovers." Similar statement was made in denying similar claim in Award 3697.

In Award 6105 the Board upheld the right of the Carrier to designate the track upon which to yard a train, even though such designation might neces sitate doubling over by the road crew. In the Findings of that award, it was stated: First Division Award 6105 (E-F-C-T vs. ACL, Referee Rudolph)

“The Carrier has the right to designate tracks upon which to yard a train. Unless this designation of tracks is unreasonable or for the purpose of some objective that would amount to switching, it is no violation of the applicable rule for the Carrier to designate a track which necessitates doubling. This record shows neither that the designation of track 2 was unreasonable, nor that yarding the train on that track, with the necessary doubling, had switching as its objective."

The foregoing principle with respect to the Carrier's right to designate tracks, even though such designation necessitated doubling, was reaffirmed in Award 11422.

Award 11471 denied the claim of a conductor and crew for an additional day's pay at yard rates account required to double train together before departure. The Findings of Award 11471 summarize some of the principles set forth in previous awards with respect to road crews doubling over and, since the Findings are so comprehensive and contain comments so directly pertinent to the instant dispute, they are quoted hereinbelow in their entirety, after which specific attention will be directed to the pertinent comments referred to: First Division Award 11471 (ORC vs. D&RGW, Referee Spencer)

“In the many awards which this Division has rendered in the adjudication of disputes involving Carrier's use of road crews in yard service, it has thoroughly established certain fundamental principles. Some of these follow: (1) Road Crews will not be used in yard work at points where yard service is maintained, and when they are so used they are entitled to a minimum day's pay at the yard rate, in addition to their road earnings of the same day. (2) When a road crew is required to 'double over' at the beginning or at the end of a trip, the work, as a general rule, is yard service. (3) When, however,

the double-over is made because the designated track does not have sufficient capacity to accommodate the whole train, the work is held to be an incident of road service and not yard work. See Award No. 3153, Referee Swacker sitting with the Division. (4) Generally speaking, it lies within the discretion of management to designate the receiving track for an incoming train and the track on which an outgoing train is built. In the exercise of this discretion, the carrier may designate a track which requires doubling-over, provided it does not make the designation for its convenience in switching. This principle was clearly set forth by the Division without the assistance of a referee in Award No. 2458, involving a dispute arising on the property of the Carrier here involved.

“These fundamental principles control in the present docket. The sole question for determination, accordingly, is whether the designation of the track here involved was dictated by the physical limitations of the terminal or by the convenience of the Carrier in świtching operations.

“The Petitioner contended that the Carrier could have placed the whole train on track 9. . This would have blocked the switching lead which bi-sects the switching yard at Grand Junction. This would have been in violation of an operating rule of the Carrier that 'trains coming into Grand Junction freight yard must cut their train so that snake lead west end of train yard will remain clear.' There was

« PreviousContinue »