The announcers and producers at Metro Traffic (a division of Westwood One) recently voted to become a part of the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA). Metro Traffic, also known as "Shadow Traffic", came to Philadelphia almost twenty years ago and has a presence in major cities across the country supplying news, weather and traffic information to television and radio stations as well as web clients. AFTRA in Philadelphia represents members from KYW radio, WMMR, WIP, WIOQ, KYW-TV and WCAU-TV.
According to the July 2008 issue of Philadelphia Sessions, AFTRA's newsletter, Metro Traffic staff had various reasons for voting to go union. An article in "Sessions" states that concerns over work loads, quality of product, lack of merit increases and the deterioration of company equipment as just a few concerns. Additionally, better training for new hires and employee safety were also strong concerns voiced by employees. KYW morning traffic anchor, Sam Clover, is cited as saying "regular cutbacks and lack of effective maintenance of crucial resources for basic traffic information gathering have seriously strained and diminished our ability to accurately provide our stations the product they've come to demand". Apparently, the crew at Metro haven't been too proud of their product lately and have lost several stations recently to Traffic Pulse "offering a better product", according to the article. (Read both articles HERE as well as view several pictures of Metro Traffic staff, including Rod Carson and Sam Clover)