Regional train strikes roll on

February 22, 2024 BY

V/Line Chief Executive Officer Matt Carrick (left) and Rail, Tram and Bus Union (RTBU) Secretary, Vik Sharma (right). Photos: SUPPLIED

INDUSTRIAL action at regional passenger rail operator V/Line will continue today (Friday, February 23) when the union conducts the fourth four-hour work stoppage this month.

Staff including conductors, controllers, and customer service will strike from 3-7am, potentially affecting services until the afternoon.

Rail Tram & Bus Union (RTBU) branch secretary Vik Sharma said the entire state’s V/Line network will be affected by the action.

“The AOllan Labor Government needs to step up and resolve the continuing dispute between V/Line and its workers.

“Into the eight month of bargaining, the Allan State Government is left without answers and is missing in action when it comes to supporting the regional workforce making V/Line services possible.

“V/Line workers are seeking a fair and reasonable Enterprise Agreement that reflects the rising cost of living and addressed key workplace issues such as job security.

A warning that appears on the V/Line homepage. Image: V/LINE

The industrial action follows last Friday’s strike that disrupted travel plans for fans heading to the Taylor Swift concert in Melbourne.

The RTBU is seeking urgent intervention from the State Government to resolve the dispute.

“V/Line strikes will continue until the Allan State Government recognises that regional jobs are as important as city jobs,” Mr Sharma said.

“This stalemate at V/Line has gone for too long – we call on the Allan State Government to intervene and sort this out as quickly as possible.”

V/Line chief executive officer Matt Carrick advised against travel on Friday morning, warning of no services before 8am and significant delays.

“We continue to negotiate with the union in good faith and have made some progress,” he said.

“Importantly, we have reached an in-principle agreement with our drivers who will not be taking part in this industrial action.

“Passengers are advised to keep up to date with the latest travel information on the V/Line website and through our social channels.”