Millions of tube passengers are having to deal with the frustration of changing travel plans, as London underground workers strike for a 24 hour period starting on Sunday evening. The strike is over an 800 person job cut implemented by the government. The Rail, Maritime and Transport union (RMT) and the Transport Salaried Staffs Association (TSSA) have already conducted one strike in September. This is the second scheduled walk out of employees of the tube, with two more planned for November.
This strike will continue until Monday evening, with union members forming picket lines outside Tube stations across the capital during the strike.
Transport for London (TfL) is once again picking up the slack to ensure as much safe travel as possible. TfL is scheduling 100 more buses to run, and increasing capacity for more than 10,000 to cross the River Thames.
Volunteers will be located at various Tube, bus, and rail stations to provide maps and other information to travelers in need of help. People who own a bike should consider riding to work.
The general secretary of the RMT, Bob Crow, is concerned about the safety of the passengers traveling on the Tube, due to the use of undertrained staff.
He commented on the training of the fill-in staffers, saying: “We have been leaked information that managers have been given two days training on key deep safety and emergency procedures that the regulations say require six weeks of intensive instruction.”
One spokesman for TfL commented on the dangerous game the RMT is playing, saying: “The RMT are, once again, scaremongering. We have asked managers and staff to volunteer to staff stations and provide information to the public about alternative services. However, we would never ask anyone to carry out safety-critical roles unless they held the relevant license.”
The mayor of London has emphasized that these strikes will not bring the Capital City to a halt.