- Strike action planned next week by RMT will affect whole Tube network if it goes ahead
- TfL has guaranteed no job losses despite roster changes
- Customers should check before they travel and leave more time to complete journeys
Transport for London (TfL) is warning customers that planned strike action by the RMT union next week will cause severe disruption across the Tube network if it goes ahead. The action, which is due to begin on Tuesday 24 August, would mean a significantly reduced service on all Tube lines for most of the week, and that journeys may need to be completed early on some days. Further information will be available ahead of, and during, the strike at tfl.gov.uk/tube-strike as well as on the TfL Go app.
London Underground has made changes to driver rosters to preserve a regular Tube service. London Underground and its trade unions have been in extensive consultation over these changes for several months, and agreement has been reached with the other recognised unions. London Underground has also met with the RMT through conciliation service ACAS several times and previous strike action was suspended while these constructive discussions continued.
Night Tube drivers have been offered the opportunity to join the full-time driver pool on a permanent basis, with Night Tube duties spread across all drivers. A number of drivers have been able to stay part-time at their own request, with some of them moving to part-time positions during the day service to help balance their work and personal lives. No Tube driver has lost their job as a result of these changes, or will do, nor has any driver been forced to switch to part- or full-time if they do not want to do.
Nick Dent, Director of Customer Operations for London Underground, said: “We have made changes to the way we roster drivers to help us provide a regular Tube service. They have also helped to create more flexibility for many of our drivers and have resulted in no job losses. We have been able to return the Waterloo & City line to service as a result of these changes, and they will help as we continue to work on fully restoring other parts of the Tube service.
“Our drivers have been vital in keeping the Tube running during the pandemic, ensuring that key workers could move around the city during the lockdowns and helping fuel London’s recovery in more recent weeks. This new arrangement means that all drivers have been given the opportunity for full-time work and long-term job certainty, while Londoners can continue to rely on the regularity of Tube services.
“I urge the RMT to withdraw this action and to continue engaging with the constructive discussions we have been having in recent weeks so that we can avoid this unnecessary disruption to Londoners going about their daily lives.”
If the RMT goes ahead with their action, there will be two strikes next week, with the first starting at 12:00 (noon) on Tuesday 24 August and running until 11:59 on Wednesday 25 August and the second at 12:00 on Thursday 26 August running until 11:59 on Friday 27 August. It is likely that the timing of these strikes will mean a changing picture on each of the days, with morning service likely to be closer to normal on Tuesday and Thursday while the evening service will be more comprehensive on Wednesday and Friday. Customers are advised to complete journeys on the Tube by 13:00 on Tuesday and Thursday, while it is possible that no service at all will operate on some lines at times during the action.
London Underground is also dealing with short-term, short-notice service changes caused by coronavirus-related absences and so more detailed travel advice will be made available as soon as possible next week. More information about travel options during this action will be made available early next week on the TfL website, real-time information channels, Journey Planner and on TfL Go. Customers who need to travel should ensure that they check journeys before leaving home, and that they leave more time to complete those journeys given the levels of likely disruption.
TfL travel ambassadors will be out across the network to help customers complete their journeys and find alternatives. London’s high-frequency bus services will continue to run as normal, as will London Overground, DLR, TfL Rail and London Trams.
Photo credit: Tfl