Southern Pacific Railroad History Center


Peter Baumhefner

Hi Bob! Yes, astonished is an excellent word to describe my feelings as well when I discovered this practice as a very green and naive manager on the SP! It sounds like you worked 4-4.5 hours on a yard job and were paid for 8 hours. In road switcher territory where I was managing, the crews were working 4-6 hours and getting paid for 12 hours! Then, if you added in the fact that most of the road switcher locomotive engineers were working in “merged territory” (former Pacific Electric) and off assignment, they were making 24 hours of pay for only working 4-6 hours! The merged territory agreement was another “bank account” for the former Pacific Electric crews. They had it down to a science, one would lay off a regular job and then all the others would end up working off assignment. They were making over $100,000 in 1975!

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