Strike threat to mainline train services as operators plan redundancies

The capital faces more travel chaos if rail workers vote this week to strike in protest at job cuts, unions have warned.

The Rail and Maritime Transport Workers (RMT) union said it is balloting four companies that run train into London on whether they are prepared to take industrial action after train operating companies revealed hundreds of planned job cuts as a result of the recession.

The votes about strikes at Stagecoach’s South West Trains, National Express’s East Anglia Line, First Group’s First Capital Connect and London Overground arose because firms refused to rule out compulsory redundancies.

The RMT is confident staff will support industrial action, which would “pretty much” cripple services in the capital. The ballots conclude tomorrow (Tuesday, 17 March).

Last week South West Trains confirmed that 15% of its workforce, or 760 jobs, would go in an attempt to deal with the economic downturn.

Meanwhile, London Midland services have been affected by a second 24-hour strike since Friday, in a row over Sunday working conditions, reports the BBC.

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