Potential large scale nation-wide Railroad Strike this coming week

I just found out from a close friend—who works for the railroad—that there is a scheduled nation wide union strike beginning September 16 if  their demands aren’t met. They are asking for a much needed pay raise, and to change the draconian work laws that only guarantee them 4 days off every 3 months (otherwise they are constantly on call and required to go when called). 

If it’s transported on land, it’s probably transported by railways — trucks typically only do the shorter hauls. Think about what you may need and maybe prioritize it early this week. We’ll be grocery shopping, topping off fuel tanks/cans, and restocking animal feed. Historically these strikes are quickly ended by Congress, but even a delay of several hours impacts thousands of trains and the supply lines are already struggling. (An analogy would be if all the nations airports closed for several hours or longer — how long would it take to catch back up?) 

I did some research and found this article (there are more):


(I also posted this on Discord — but I’m not “Discord fluent” yet and it seems like things get lost or quickly passed over there if you’re not staying on top of them. Probably just me.)


  • Comments (7)

    • 3

      Just going off the title of this article A looming railroad strike next week could cost U.S. economy $2 billion a day, I sure would step in if I were congress. Not only from a financial standpoint, but that will ripple effect to many people’s lives and even cause death if food or medical supplies are not transported in time.

      Goes to show that we are super reliant on rail, planes, trucks, and more to get us what we need. That Just-In-Time model.

      • 1

        what would you be legally able to do via being in the Congress? 

      • 4

        “what would you be legally able to do via being in the Congress?”

        This is a disagreement over the renewal terms for a labor union agreement. Hypothetically, congress could set such terms arbitrarily and force the renewal, hopefully after listening to arguments from the two parties and trying to find a fair resolution.

        But this time it was actually the executive branch that stepped in. The secretary of transportation mediated a negotiation between the union and companies. No official government powers were directly used for this.

    • -4
      1. This should not be an issu if your prepped in any way…..
      • 8

        True, but can’t that be said about most things? Isn’t part of prepping being aware of what’s on the horizon and doing some mental arithmetic and figuring out where your are at that moment? I prefer to look ahead, not just hope that my current preps are “fine”. 

      • 3

        I agree. Prepping isn’t about immunity to events, but about assessing risks and deciding what trade-offs to make, at least for most people who aren’t 100% off the grid. This will affect all of North America but it’s telling that I don’t see it in the Canadian press. 

    • 4

      Yes, this development certainly has my attention and is a good opportunity to check all preps. For example, this article (might be paywalled) outlines how the railroad strike might affect water and energy supplies (deliveries of chlorine for water treatment as one vector).  

      I had been planning to do some extra prepping this weekend anyway for “Preptember”, and this possible strike is certainly helping to keep me motivated to do so! It’s a great opportunity to have prepping conversations with our loved ones who might not be aware of how interconnected these things are.  How quickly we’ve forgotten the lessons of things like the Colonial Pipeline hack!