TriMet says a safety inspection was about a contract not safety
Oregon Department of Transportation safety inspectors are giving the Tri-Met rail system a clean bill of health.
But Tri-Met says the real issue is not safety, it's a labor contract.
Tri Met Safety Manager Harry Saporta took ODOT safety teams on a tour of light rail tracks. "We inspected over 21 switches, six rail crossings and actually walked about five miles of track."
ODOT says the system is safe.
The inspection was prompted by an Amalgamated Transit Union complaint and Tri-Met's Mary Fetsch says it was not really about safety. "The real issue is, health care reform is needed to prevent future service cuts and fare increases."
She says the union doesn't want to pay into its costly health care program.
But union boss Bruce Hansen...insists "it still concerns us for the safety of the public and the employee."
No new contract talks are scheduled.