Reports: BNSF laying off railroad workers in Minnesota, North Dakota


Dozens of employees of BNSF Railway are getting sidetracked by furloughs.

The company confirmed to the Grand Forks Herald that a decline in freight traffic has BNSF letting go of some of its workers.

Spokeswoman Amy McBeth did not say how many employees are affected or where, but the Herald reports the layoffs are at four yards: Dilworth, Minnesota and Grand Forks, Mandan, and Minot, North Dakota, and says the number of workers involved may be near 100.

KVRR also lists those four rail yards and reports the layoffs have occurred over the last two weeks.

McBeth tells the Herald BNSF expects to call the employees back when freight volumes recover.

The new reports are nearly identical to a BNSF announcement last May, when the company said a drop in freight volume had led to an unspecified number of furloughs.

As the Associated Press mentioned then, BNSF hauls most of the oil shipped from North Dakota, where drilling has been declining.

Shrinking freight traffic is not unique to BNSF, though. The Chicago Tribune reported this month that collectively the country's major railroads have seen carloads drop more than five percent since October.

The Tribune says besides reduced energy traffic, railroads are also being squeezed by the strong dollar limiting exports and by retailers moving toward leaner inventories.

Next Up

Boundary Waters/BWCA

All BWCA visitors will now have to watch three 'Leave No Trace' videos

Visitors left an "unacceptably high amount" of damage last year.


Ten fatal overdoses in past 6 weeks reported in region of northern MN

Law enforcement agencies have issued a plea to the general public.

u.s. district court minnesota - federal court minneapolis

Bracing for security threats, federal courthouses closing in Minnesota

Security is also being ramped up at the state capitol.

N95 mask

3M sues Florida company that sold 10K counterfeit N95 masks to HCMC

The Maplewood company has obtained a temporary injunction against the firm.

vaccine, covid

Walz, Whitmer, and Evers call on Trump Admin. to buy more vaccines

It comes after The Washington Post reported that the country's COVID vaccine reserves have been exhausted.

Karl-Anthony Towns

Wolves-Grizzlies game off, KAT tests postive for COVID

The Timberwolves star was among several players that are dealing with COVID-related issues.

minnesota state fair

Planning for the 2021 Minnesota State Fair is underway

The fair suffered huge financial losses due to COVID-19, but organizers are moving forward with planning "different scenarios" for this summer.

Screen Shot 2021-01-15 at 2.16.44 PM

Heather Brown named as new WCCO 'This Morning' anchor

She will be joining Jason DeRusha on the CBS affiliate's Morning Show.

DPS John Harrington

DPS Commissioner: No credible threats to state Capitol, but ready if something arises

Local and state law enforcement officials have a plan in case a threat arises.