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As we move into week three of our safety dispute over LU’s unsafe detrainment process we are happy to inform drivers that our action remains solid. Drivers are to be congratulated for standing strong in the face of LU’s ambivalence to the problem.
Hopes of a resolution to the dispute were raised when your union was invited by LU to talks at ACAS which took place on Tuesday 29th of January. Unfortunately we have to inform you that these talks led nowhere with LU bringing little or nothing to the table. As a result our dispute continues.
One development was that London Underground have finally acknowledged that RMT and ASLEF’s concerns for drivers and passengers safety is real. Another admission was that since the dispute LU are running 15% less trains than before the start of the action. All drivers should note that if we are 2 minutes late picking up a train we are interviewed and threatened with all sorts of silliness. But with Bakerloo bosses only managing to run 85% of the service at best, you’d think that some tough questions would be asked by someone higher up the food chain.
At ACAS and through their mediator, London Underground did offer 7 solutions to try to resolve the dispute. Your union felt that these proposals fell well short of our aspirations. We will let you be the judge - here is what LU proposed:
1. LU offered to set up a 'Working Party' to look into the recommendations of the recent Formal Investigation (FIR) into the 'boy on track' incident. They proposed this group would meet monthly and would look at the recommendations of the FIR. Basically this would be a committee set to look at implementing the recommendations of a previous committee. Monty Python could not have offered a better solution.
2. LU offered to set up a 'preventative measures campaign' for passengers; this would take the form of posters, tweets, emails, cab cards and any other ideas that we wished to put forward.
3. As part of proposal two, LU will commission a job of work “to profile” the type of passenger who tends to get over carried.
4. To reduce the 'embarrassment' of passengers over carried into sidings and reduce their potential anxiety and anger, LU will look into trying to get a DVA Message played when trains are in sidings and drivers are changing ends to reassure these passengers.
5. Bespoke conflict awareness training for drivers to be delivered in CDP and guidance for drivers in dealing with over carries.
6. Reinforce to drivers what they need to do when they have an over carry and how to react in a threatening situation, i.e., return to cab, press emergency button on radio and hope the problem goes away, etc.
7. Update the briefing pack for drivers to include any recommendations from item 1.
We are sure you will agree with your union that LU didn’t really offer a solution to what is evidently an unsafe process for drivers and customers alike. One driver suggested that the only proposal LU missed was ‘flash the lights on and off 4 times instead of 3’.
Your union remains open to further discussions with LU to try resolve this issue and hope that any further talks will result in serious proposals being put forward for a safe detrainment procedure.
Keep solid. Keep safe!