Working outdoors offers some employees a sense of freedom.
Carman Miguel Hernandez is one such employee. But he also feels a strong sense of responsibility while inspecting cars.
“We’re here to keep everyone safe,” he said.
That includes TY&E employees, who rely on equipment, such as handholds and crossover boards, to be strong and ready for use. Quality inspections also ensure fluidity. Failures and derailments on the rail lines can cause a mess, Hernandez said.
He and his teammates regularly inspect 300 cars in the course of their shift. No matter what the volume, they’re driven to perform thorough inspections while placing team safety at the forefront.
“We look out for each other,” Hernandez said. “It’s all about teamwork and being on the same page.”
Away from work
Hernandez’s son, Joshua, is a professional boxer, so he enjoys time ringside. Joshua, 21, has fought at the UIC Pavilion. He’s a junior at DePaul with an academic scholarship and a 4.0 grade point average. So far Joshua is 4-0 with four knockouts to his credit.
“He trains hard,” Hernandez said. “He’s doing well for himself. The sky’s the limit”
Working for the Belt has helped Hernandez provide opportunities for his children, who also include Jeovani, 17; Justin, 16, and Yolanda, 2.
“Family is why you never take a chance,” he said.
Hernandez credits Carman Tim Robinson, who he’s been working with for two years, with helping maintain a safe environment.
“When you have a good partner, everything goes smoothly,” Hernandez said.