Rail services disrupted by strike
RAIL services were disrupted again yesterday because of another strike in the long-running dispute over guards on trains.
Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union on Arriva Rail North (Northern) walked out for the 29th time since the row started. Only a third of trains were due to run.
The company said: “We will be operating a reduced timetable with very few trains running before 9am and after 6pm. We expect to run around 30% of services and all cus- tomers are advised to plan carefully if they intend to travel on the rail network.”
The union claimed crime has increased in the area served by Northern, saying it showed the need for guards on every train.
A Northern spokesman said: “Travelling to and from Northern stations is safe and it is inaccurate and misleading of the RMT to suggest otherwise.
“Over 100 million passenger journeys are made on Northern’s network each year and there is no evidence that crime at Northern stations, in particular those which are unmanned, has increased.”
RMT general secretary Mick Cash said: “No guard on the trains, combined with the de-staffing of stations, is a toxic cocktail that gives criminals a free hand on Britain’s violent railways.”
Strikes will be held on Northern on the next three Saturdays, while RMT members on South Western Railway will strike for 48 hours from next Friday in the same dispute.