The new Republican.
Between 1972 and 1979 at Lock and Dam #50 on the Ohio River near Cave in Rock, Illinois; at Lock and Dam 50 towing companies had to break their barges apart in groups of 6 or less to lock.The lock chamber at Lock 50 was 600 feel long and 110 foot wide. The standard barge is 195 feet long, 35 feet wide, and can be used to a 9-foot draft. Its capacity is 1500 tons.
it is very hard to take those barges apart to lock at those 600 foot chambers. The union Steel towboat companies from Pittsburg had it down to a science and made it easy on their deck hands with good training and union scale pay; those companies kept their employees and you would see the same people every time they came through the lock; they were efficient and careful.
We are still in the time frame of 1972 and 1979.
During that period of time I saw my first glimpse of what was to come in our country and I was shocked. An ACBL Deck Leader was screaming at his crew to do the job quickly putting them in danger. I asked him later why he was treating his men that way and he replied. I care about the company and not the employees, I can pick up any wino in Paducah and still do the job for the company. The company comes first.
That was my first glimpse of what was to become of union scale jobs as the propagandist were screaming that unions were hoods and mobsters.
Today those strong unions are gone and employees have no benefits.