STRIKES of senior conductors have been called by the RMT on East Midlands Railway, in a dispute over safety.
Three 24-hour walkouts are set to be staged on Sundays 16, 23 and 30 May. The last of these would be over a bank holiday weekend.
The union claims that safety could be put at risk by new terms and conditions of employment for senior conductors.
In particular, the RMT has rejected plans to run Class 360 trains on the Midland Main Line when worked in multiple, because EMR would be providing one train manager who would be confined to one 4-car set while the train was in motion, meaning that passengers in other sets in 8- and 12-car trains would not be able to reach a member of staff except by pulling an emergency handle and stopping the train.
RMT general secretary Mick Cash said the union had ‘no choice’. He continued: ‘The company do not seem to be taking the genuine safety concerns of our members seriously. We believe that passengers should continue to have access to a member of staff on the service.
‘The union remains available for further talks and open to discussions on another safety critical role to assist the Train Manager on these trains.’
Railnews has requested a comment from East Midlands Railway.
Meanwhile, ScotRail conductors walked out again on Sunday for the sixth consecutive weekend, in a dispute over pay for rest day working. They were joined by ticket examiners for the first time, who staged a parallel walkout.