Posted 1st July 2015 | 2 Comments

Majority vote for RMT strike at First Great Western

FOUR out of five RMT members on First Great Western have voted in favour of a strike in protest at what the union says is a lack of 'very basic assurances' about the new Intercity Express Trains, which are being manufactured by Hitachi.

The RMT is opposed to the possibility of introducing driver-only operation on the fleet, which is specified by the Department for Transport. The trains are being built with DOO controls in the cabs, but no plans to use these controls have been announced.

RMT general secretary Mick Cash said: "RMT has made every effort to secure a series of very basic assurances from FGW over jobs, services and safety as a result of the introduction of the new Hitachi fleet and they have simply ignored us. We therefore had no option but to ballot all staff for action to force the company to take this issue seriously and the members have now voted decisively for action. That mandate will now be considered by the union."

Reader Comments:

Views expressed in submitted comments are that of the author, and not necessarily shared by Railnews.

  • Michael Brooks, Bedford

    I should have thought it extremely unlikely that the TOC would withdraw train managers from long-distance services as they are needed for ticket inspection and other duties. However, door operation by the driver saves time and means that the train manager doesn't have to rush to the end of the carriage to open or close the doors. With the increased service frequency that the IEP will bring, there are likely to be at least as many train manager jobs on Great Western in the future as there are now.

  • Mick Rogers, Cardiff

    If the RMT has issues with the prospect of DOO on the IEP fleet, then they should take up the matter directly with the DfT who are have specified the requirement, not with FGW and most certainly not at the inconvenience of the travelling public.