Monday, March 5, 2012

Busways Does Strike - Total Disruption To The Community! - St Marys Mt Druitt Star

Bus strike leaves pupils and commuters stranded

05 Mar, 2012 01:00 AM
MORE snap strikes haven't been ruled out after a small group of Busways drivers caused chaos at Mount Druitt and Blacktown interchanges last month.
Busways has apologised after some drivers walked off the job without notice on February 24, which delayed many schoolchildren getting home.

A Transport Workers Union spokeswoman declined to comment on the strike.

"We aren't in a position to comment as this is a sensitive matter and we don't want to be seen as influencing the case as both parties are in discussions," she said.

She would not comment when asked if whether further snap strikes would go ahead.

Busways confirmed union members conducted a snap strike as a result of disciplinary action against a driver who refused to adhere to procedures.

"Busways notified affected schools as soon as this was brought to our attention and aimed to keep service disruptions to a minimum, however, this snap meeting did affect some services including some school services," a spokeswoman said. "All schools were cleared by 4.30pm."

Mount Druitt Commuters Improvement Group president John Svoboda was caught up in the chaos at Mount Druitt.
The Whalan resident was due to catch the 755 bus at 5.15pm and watched five 758 services arrive before a 755 finally arrived just before 6pm.

Mr Svoboda was told different versions of what was happening.

One driver told him the strike was in relation to drivers wanting a meal room in Blacktown, while others denied there was a strike at all.

"There were no signs or anyone to tell us what was going on," Mr Svoboda said.

Busways will seek help from Fair Work Australia to work with the union to resolve the matter.

"We had no notice of the strike and no time to place notices at bus stops for our customers," the spokeswoman said.
"Our priority was to transport school students home and clear busy bus ranks at Blacktown and Mt Druitt interchanges.
"Busways staff worked tirelessly to ensure that disruptions were kept to a minimum and had all services running back on time by 6pm."

Mr Svoboda wants better communication and more notice if drivers were to strike again.

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Click here for our original story on the Busways Shemozzle

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