rail passengers face more disruption as strike continues
48-hour strike on First Great Western trains has left commuters
who use Highbridge and Burnham Railway Station facing more disruption
services through the area have been halved by the industrial action,
which started on Wednesday evening.
Great Western is
operating a revised timetable from Highbridge, with more details
Great Western said
more than 60% of services were "operating as normal",
but the RMT union said the figures were "pure fiction".
dispute is over plans to dispose of guards and buffet cars on
FGW's new Hitachi Inter City Express trains.
RMT said about 2,000 members of staff are on strike across the
secretary Mick Cash said: "FGW are running a skeleton service
in some areas which is dangerously overcrowded and being operated
by inadequately trained managers, raising serious safety issues
which RMT will be taking up formally."
a spokesman for the train operator said it was "too early
to say" how many employees had decided to strike but safety
was its "top priority" and it would "not operate
a service without the correct number of safety competent people
general secretary, Mick Cash said: "The company still feel
that the configuration of the new super express trains is out
of their control and that it would be in their best interests
to have 'driver-only' operations and to remove the buffet cars."
position is totally unacceptable and the union is clear that the
design of the new fleet of trains is a matter for First Group
and that there is still time to modify the rolling stock."
an open letter to customers, First Great Western's Mark Hopwood
said the new trains would have more staff, not fewer.
said staff's existing pay and conditions would be protected and
there would be "no compulsory redundancies for station and
customer service staff".