Driverless trains

RMT warns of action over driverless Tube plan

RMT warns of action as Government places contract for driverless trains on London Underground

TUBE UNION RMT warned today of a campaign of action as it emerged that the Government has placed adverts for a consultancy contract to explore the introduction of driverless trains on London Underground.

General Secretary Mick Lynch said;

"The news that the Government is pressing ahead with wasting money on a consultancy project on driverless trains on London Underground when there are massive challenges facing the transport network shows their twisted set of priorities.

Tube bosses testing feasibility of driverless trains on Jubilee Line


Further to my Circular No IR/345/16 17th November 2016, I have been in correspondence with our sister union ASLEF with a view to working together on this matter. In addition a reply has been received from London Underground stating that the tests were at “the feasibility stage, assessment of the range of potential options to increase the service is not finalised and that this isn’t to fully automate the line”.

London Underground bosses confirm driverless train testing has taken place

Following a number of reports of London Underground carrying out trials of ‘driverless’ trains into and out of Willesden Green sidings on the Jubilee line, the Trains Health & Safety Council formally asked LUL at director level if the reports were correct. LUL confirmed that they have been testing technology that would allow trains to move in and out of sidings without a Train Operator on the train.

Driverless train testing on Jubilee Line


The following resolution was recently received from the London Transport Regional Council:-

“Jubilee South Branch has been made aware that testing has taken place on the Jubilee Line whereby trains were moved without the need of the operator to ‘activate’ the cab before using ATO buttons.

Jubilee South branch concerned about recent train tests on the line

Jubilee South branch have passed a motion highlighting our concerns following reports of testing on the Jubilee Line, whereby a train was alledgedly moved in engineering hours without the operator being required to 'activate' the cab with their key or to operate the manual control switch.

Branch officials and representatives are investigating the reports and preparing an action plan to respond to the issue.

The motion

Driverless testing on Jubilee Line.

Central Line falling concrete incident reinforces case against driverless trains

RMT says that Central Line falling concrete incident reinforces case against driverless trains and for protecting track patrols.

General Secretary Mick Cash said;

"This incident of falling concrete from development works above the Central Line is not the first of its kind and with whole swathes of London now a building site it rams home the dangers for the tube network as developers rush ahead with their projects. 

M Door Dispute: Management Will Not Impose New Rule


LUL recently implemented a change to the Rule for dealing with a rear M door alarm activation on the Jubilee line. Previous to this change a Train Operator was asked to contact the Controller and then go back to investigate the activation. The Rule change is that the Train Operator would now contact the Controller, get authority to proceed in Restricted Manual and continue to next station.

London Underground Document Predicts Driverless Trains On Pic From 2022

The RMT has seen a London Underground document which states trains 'with or without drivers' could be introduced on the Piccadilly Line from 2022 - just eight years away. The document, which has been released as an information pack for managers to pass on to workers, also explains that Platform Edge Doors will need to be installed across the line and that preparation work for this could begin from 2016.

London Underground Driverless Trains Advert

London Underground has begun the process for the purchase of driverless trains. This ‘Periodic Notice’ from early March, for trains capable of ‘unattended operation’ is taken from the Official Journal of the European Union. A Periodic Notice “provides advance information about works, supplies or service contracts that, at the beginning of the budgetary year, the contracting authority intends to award during the next 12 months.”

The RMT has already declared itself in dispute over the issue of driverless trains.

Tube Bosses Announce Driverless Train Plan

London Underground's 'Director of Strategy & Service Development' has sent out an internal bulletin to all tube workers detailing a plan for new trains that "will have the capability to be operated with, or without, a train operator at the front of the train." London Underground will pay £3 billion for this new fleet of trains which they plan to introduce from 2020 and "by the end of the 2030s, ultimately be rolled out across the Piccadilly, Bakerloo, Central and Waterloo & City Lines."