Vic train strike fuels transport mayhem
Victorian public transport will be disrupted again on Wednesday as regional trains won't be running on the Geelong and Warrnambool lines.
Buses will replace the suspended services but passengers have been advised to add an extra hour to their planned commute.
These stoppages are part of the Rail, Tram and Bus Union industrial action taken over a year-long pay and conditions negotiation with V/Line.
"Negotiations with V/Line continue to go in circles, we're not getting anywhere, we need a circuit breaker," RTBU Branch Secretary Luba Grigorovitch said.
The scheduled strike comes after the huge crowds attending the Australian Open in Melbourne saw trams come to a halt and trains cancelled on Tuesday.
The fifth strike called by Yarra Trams in less than a year means all drivers put their tools down for four hours in an action deemed "unnecessary" by the company.
Several train services were cancelled following union claims of drivers not being trained on new tracks that were opened on Monday, raising safety concerns.
Metro Trains filed an application to Fair Work claiming that these refusals to drive on the new tracks can be classified as unprotected industrial action.
Calls for the government to mediate between the RTBU and the various public transport companies have fallen on deaf ears.
"I absolutely share passengers' frustration and as I said, this is action that could have been avoided," Transport Minister Melissa Horne told reporters on Tuesday.
"The government has done everything that it can to try and get those parties together."
The opposition considered the strikes to be a major embarrassment, harming Melbourne's reputation as a host of major events.
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