April 6, 2011

SPRINGFIELD (April 6)—House Bill 1573 passed the Illinois House by a vote of 111-0.

The measure, which was introduced on behalf of the UTU on Feb. 15 and sponsored by Rep. Dan Beiser (D-Alton), mandates that all contract carrier vehicles that transport railroad crews must have a readily available first-aid kit on board.

Current law already provides that trains, engines and company-owned motor vehicles be equipped with the kits. H.B. 1573 would close the last gap by including contract carrier vehicles.

“I would like to thank all of our members who contacted their state representatives and asked them to vote for H.B. 1573,” said UTU Illinois Legislative Director Robert W. Guy. “It’s clear the House got the message, and it’s clear the House members understand the safety concerns of railroad employees.”

The bill now moves to the State Senate, where it is expected to be sponsored by State Sen. A.J. Wilhelmi (D-Joliet).