130 laid off at Norfolk Southern


FILE – In this March 3, 2019, file photo a Norfolk Southern freight train passes through the Northside of Pittsburgh as show begins to fall. Norfolk Southern Corp. reports earning on Wednesday, July 24. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar, File)

ROANOKE, Va. (WFXR) — About 130 employees of Norfolk Southern Railroad in have been laid off, WFXR News has learned.

Tuesday’s layoffs appear to have impacted Norfolk Southern locations across the country and come on the heels of the company placing 50 Roanoke employees on furlough in May and closing a Roanoke dispatch center in January 2018.

In a statement, a company spokesperson said the layoffs were due to the “decreased need for locomotive repair.”

“Consistent with our strategic plan and current business levels, our ability to streamline operations and use fewer locomotives has required the difficult but necessary decision to reduce our locomotive mechanical forces due to the decreased need for locomotive repair. Today’s furloughs at our Roanoke Locomotive facilities totaled approximately 130 employees. Norfolk Southern will continue to evaluate staffing in light of our operational performance and traffic volume.”

Tom Werner, Spokesperson for Norfolk Southern Railroad

Responding to the latest news of layoffs, Delegate Sam Rasoul (D-Roanoke) said he was disappointed the company announced the layoffs on the day after Labor Day.

“I am shocked and deeply disappointed to hear about Norfolk Southern’s plans right after Labor Day,” Rasoul said. “Aside from financially harming families and creating a severe economic blow to the Roanoke Valley, this decision shows a blatant disregard for Roanoke’s role in helping to build the railroad in our region.”

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