Latest Rail News


RMT threatens further Tube strikes in station staffing dispute

RMT has confirmed it will renew strike action on the Tube next month unless London Underground can meet its demands on station staffing and safety.

The threat marks continuation of the union’s industrial action last weekend, when LU staff associated with RMT and the TSSA went on strike over the dispute over staff cuts and ticket office closures.

The union has now said that LU’s staff cuts have left station control rooms unstaffed, threatening passenger safety, and that further strikes are imminent unless LU emerges with serious proposals for negotiation by 6 February.

“RMT members have shown this week that they will not stand by while safety is compromised on London Underground off the back of cash-led cuts to staffing levels that the union has warned would have a serious, lasting and corrosive impact for staff and passengers alike,” said the union’s general secretary, Mick Cash.

“With the constant overcrowding on stations and platforms it is only a matter of time before there is a major tragedy if we don’t act decisively. Our dispute is about taking action to haul back the cuts machine and put safety back at the top of the agenda.”

RMT has highlighted as justification for its argument an incident last year in Canning Town station, where a woman was left trapped between the train and the platform for fifteen minutes because the control room was unstaffed following cuts.

TfL’s safety report into the incident acknowledged that the operating model “did not match customer demand or resourcing levels”, leading the union to argue that LU bosses accepted RMT’s “unarguable” case for restoring safety-critical staff.

The union has confirmed that it remains open for talks with LU, with TfL confirming that the parties are due to meet at ACAS to discuss the issue on Monday.

Steve Griffiths, LU’s chief operating officer, who wrote for the last issue of RTM, said: “We look forward to resuming talks at ACAS on Monday in order to make progress towards resolving this dispute.”

A review by London TravelWatch into the office closures – which began in 2014 under former London mayor Boris Johnson’s Fit for the Future plan – rejected the idea of reopening the offices.

However, the watchdog agreed that a number of new measures were key to rolling out the closures safely, including making staff more visible. TfL has now promised to implement its recommendations.

Earlier this week, members of the Greater London Authority  criticised current mayor Sadiq Khan for failing to avert last weekend’s strike, accusing him of backing down on his pre-election pledge to bring ‘zero strikes’ during his term as mayor.

Have you got a story to tell? Would you like to become an RTM columnist? If so, click here 


There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment


Rail industry Focus

View all News


The challenge of completing Crossrail

05/07/2019The challenge of completing Crossrail

With a new plan now in place to deliver Crossrail, Hedley Ayres, National Audit Office manager, major projects and programmes, takes a look at ho... more >
Preparing the industry to deliver trains for the future

04/07/2019Preparing the industry to deliver trains for the future

The move to decarbonise the rail network involves shifting to cleaner modes of traction by 2050. David Clarke, technical director at the Railway ... more >

Most Read

'the sleepers' blog

On the right track, Sulzer is awarded RISAS accreditation for Nottingham Service Centre

29/06/2020On the right track, Sulzer is awarded RISAS accreditation for Nottingham Service Centre

Following an independent audit, Sulzer’s Nottingham Service Centre has been accepted as part of the rail industry supplier approval scheme (RISAS). The accreditation reinforces the high-quality standards that are maintained by Sulzer’s... more >
read more blog posts from 'the sleeper' >


Andrew Haines, CE of Network Rail, tells BBC News his organisation could issue future rail franchises

24/06/2019Andrew Haines, CE of Network Rail, tells BBC News his organisation could issue future rail franchises

Andrew Haines, the Chief Executive of Network Rail, has told the Today programme on Radio 4's BBC’s flagship news programme that he would not rule out his organisation issuing future r... more >
Advancing the rail industry with management degree apprenticeships

08/05/2019Advancing the rail industry with management degree apprenticeships

In answering the pressing questions of how current and future generations of managers can provide solutions to high-profile infrastructure projects across the UK, Pearson Business School, part of... more >