A three day strike by more than 2,000 Metronet London Underground maintenance workers is set to begin at 6pm this Sunday (April 15th) after several days of talks failed to resolve the disagreement. The dispute revolves around plans by Metronet to transfer around 250 workers to train maker Bombardier Transportation as part of an effort to introduce new trains and improve reliability.
RMT union members had voted by a majority of 750-60 in favour of the strike. Negotiations continued but inevitably failed. Union leader Bob Crow said "It is a great pity that after we suspended the overtime ban scheduled for this week to enable those talks to take place, the company has not taken the extra step towards us that could have resolved the dispute."
Metronet's workers maintain the Bakerloo, Central, Victoria, Waterloo & City, Circle, District, Metropolitan, Hammersmith & City and East London lines.
Mark Cooper from Metronet remained optmistic and has asked RMT to continue the talks: "In recent weeks we have worked hard to reach an agreement with the unions. We remain available for talks at any time. The planned strike action will lead to disruption for the three million people who use the Tube every day. It is unnecessary and unwarranted.....
At the request of the unions we have reduced the numbers of staff that will transfer to a minimum – but we owe it to the travelling public to push ahead with plans that will improve services.
"Should the RMT go ahead with this action we will do all we can to minimise the disruption to the travelling public."