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Stephen

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  1. There are allot of eligible Trackworkers who can retire now, and in the next year or two allot more. There are allot of guys trying to retire now that can't because NYCERS is backed up. Guys that might have stayed to pad their pension a little more, now want to leave because they don't want to get sick. The pick currently is exactly 2 years, I wouldn't be surprised if it lasts another year, or year and a half. There was a 2020 seniority list draft out last February before the pandemic hit, and guys shot up hundreds of numbers across all seniority levels. To give you an idea the bottom seniority number (last man) on the draft was 1900, his original number from 2018 was 2330, so he shot up 430 numbers. That was in February. In Track seniority is always flowing, guys retiring, moving to other departments etc. They were trying to have the pick right before COVID happened, and it was delayed before that due to grievances. I can only imagine the grievances that will be going on now with everything going on. So I'm not expecting a pick anytime soon, even asked Carlos Albert, he's heard nothing either. They'll most likely extend everything as they did with the hiring freeze after the 2008 crash, people were getting called 8-9 years after the fact.
  2. Alex I don't know if you took exam 9624, or 8611link is below if you're interested. Exam 9624 Exam 8611 As far as who we work along side with, signal, power distribution, structure would be the top 3. In the structure departments could be either masons, carpenters, lighting, or plumbers. I haven't heard anything in regards to your question, but as I mentioned above the TA is hiring folks, maybe not in the masses it was pre COVID, but they are hiring nonetheless. Good luck to you.
  3. Stop fearmongering, it's all political tactics, go look in the T/O and Conductor threads, they have classes going to start as we speak. Until you hear from Carlos Albert, or Utano that we're getting laid off, stop assuming, and listening to the news networks. If it were to happen provisional appointments would be the first to go, ( in any department ) and more than likely they would try and force people out who are already past the retirement plateau e.g. lifers. Now if I wanted to fearmonger, I would say if you have 2 years or less I'd worry. But don't until the union tells you otherwise. They have to maintain the FRA mandate of 2200-2500 Trackworkers on the job. Now could they do a hiring freeze ? Quite possibly, but again 180 Livingston is open, and they are processing folks in other titles. So do the math. Remember the " so called layoffs " would happen across all MTA agencies as a whole, MNRR, LIRR, NYCTA, SIRR, MTBTA etc. There's allot of white collar fat that would get trimmed as well. Thank You.
  4. Outstanding certification means NYCTA has your info from DCAS, and is gearing up to process another class. Not on an outstanding certification means your info was sent back to DCAS, which basically means they don't have any classes scheduled at the moment. I know the list expires in December, not sure if it will be extended either.
  5. Day 3-8 is where you go to post, you'll get that information in Track School. You could be sent to one of a few places. East New York Yard East 180th St Yard 38th St Yard Queensboro Plaza From these locations you'll be sent out with a maintenance gang, either on the structure or open cut. You could also be flagging in one of the yards. Here is where you'll go out with the flagger in the gang, set up flags, full and adjacent, in the proper sequence, distances, etc. Once all the flags are set up you place the red, and then the gang can go to work. You'll use either a whistle, or air horn to notify the gang working of a train coming, where they'll have to clear up, or you'll have to hold the train until they get the track safe for the train to proceed. They'll signal you to either hold the train, or let it proceed. Their life is in your hands remember that. You'll have paperwork that the MS1 will have to fill out everyday you post, which you'll have to bring in on day 9, which is your final. If any of you guys should get Queensboro Plaza you'll either be flagging on the N or the 7 line. I was mostly on the 7 line except for one day. You'll get plenty of practice on the 7 line, it's CBTC, and the trains come every 2 minutes. You'll definitely have to hold a few trains for the gang to get any work done. But again it's good practice.
  6. Just wait for the flagging class. That rule book posted is outdated, the latest one is the June 2016 edition. The flagging book also was updated as of January 2016. Without going into too much detail, no one here will have a problem in flagging school. Everyone that's going into school will have no problems passing the course. Test is multiple choice, and very straightforward as long as you pay attention. You guys will also get track safety certified before you go to flagging school. When I finished training, I had a 3 week wait before my flagging instruction began. Having the track safety card allows you to enter, and work on the roadbed, you just can't flag, or setup lights.
  7. Flagging in general isn't hard at all. If you passed the Trackworker exam, this is just another common sense test. Passing is 100%, you must get the questions all correct on the written exam. You'll see when you get to flagging school, the instructors go over everything enough as to where you should get 100% without even second thinking a question.
  8. I'll give some of you guys a heads up, I'm not in maintenance never was, I'm in CN. One place that allot of people know of in maintenance to avoid is Utica Ave on the A line in Brooklyn. I don't know the specifics, but people who go there bid out as fast as they can. Every bid sheet that came out this past year there was 6+ spots open at this quarters. Seems to be the norm.
  9. Its dangerous over there regardless, it's a very long curve area, station included, with everything being open columns. Even with full flagging on 1 track adjacents on 2, you still have trains flying by on 3, and roaring into the station on 4. You have to keep your head on a swivel over there. I'm starting my 3rd year in March, and everything is still micro managed. You have good supervision, but also very incompetent. The good Level 1's and 2's allot of them are on their way out in the next 1-3 years in CN. Great example of a flawed system. The 3rd rail Foreman who blew up a Slotter on a live 3rd rail at 96th on the 1 line last year, and almost blew up 100 guys in the process still has his job and still is a Level 1 at Hoyt St in the office. We literally were waiting for power off and secure, and about to go down when it happened. I still don't know how he didn't kill himself. Luck is an understatement.
  10. We just finished a 600ft Brokk job at 59th on the 1 line on 4 track 2 weeks ago. Allot of us got to see the Boggs memorial plaque on 2 track just outside of the north end of the station.
  11. I've heard that story a few times in CN from guys with over 20 years in Track. I know they're still dragging the Boggs lawsuit out. That's usually what happens when you have 100 lawyers versus 1. It's sad that they treat employees that way, but a customer can be drunk, crack his head open and get 600k in no time for it.
  12. You're not the only one, I know people who've broken them in, used inserts, and anything possible to make the boots bearable, and still they have issues. The boots suck period. Especially in Capital on Dig Outs, and Ekki Hilti overtime jobs, or if you're a Wetsaw Operator, it doesn't take much for them to fall apart. Even with the Slotter my fav tool, the splash from the sparks will slowly degrade the leather even with a good stance. I went through 3 pairs in a year of hard use. I'm on my 4th now and so far I've been lucky. The last pair the stitching completely stripped of the side of my right boot. In normal walking conditions a pair will last a year, heavy use no way. Even Timberland Pros 10 years ago, were a hell of allot better in quality than the ones out today. EDIT: Also you'll see guys with boots beaten to death with almost no soles or heels left. Don't get hurt in those if you want any sort of compensation. You'll be told your boots should have been taken out of service. They look for any avenue they can not to pay you.
  13. Everything in those boots the toe and metatarsal guard are of composite material. The only part of those boots that has any metal are the shoe lace eyes. The met guard will eventually break in. I'm not guaranteeing your feet still won't hurt. Personally the Leheighs don't bother me, but I've also been wearing work boots in general for close to 20 years. I kind of wish the TA boots had the external met guard, it gives you far more protection while being easier on your feet. But supposedly those came to an end, when someone got the guard caught on a bench wall ladder rung and hurt themselves.
  14. Supposedly, and according to the contract in January 2018 there will be a website where there are name brand boots you can purchase that fall under the TA specs for safety shoes. I'll believe it when it happens, but with the name brand boots you only get a certain amount reimbursed. I also not certain if Leheigh is still going to be the main supplier of safety boots, since their contract with the TA expired in October.
  15. Fleet is part of Track dept, being able to pick it out of school is unlikely. Bidding into it you might get lucky. I have an A license too, but someone with an A permit with more seniority can still pick you out, or win the bid.

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