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Publication Date: September 6 2010
RMT will be making the case that the current 800 job losses, amongst station and platform based staff, are the thin end of the wedge as Mayor Boris Johnson and his officials look to slash billions from transport spending in the Capital to pay off the costs of the failed tube privatisation experiment and to meet ConDem government spending targets.
Euston is a station where a major disaster was recently avoided after station staff spotted smoke coming from an escalator. As the fire detection system failed it was only the vigilance and experience of station staff that ensured a safe emergency evacuation.
A similar incident occurred a month ago at Oxford Circus in the middle of rush hour where again smoke was spotted coming from an air conditioning unit by a member of platform staff and again it was that early intervention that ensured safe evacuation of the station.
Last weekend, a member of station staff apprehended a man with a Samurai sword and two loaded guns at Moorgate. All of the staff grades involved in these three incidents are amongst the 800 jobs now threatened.
RMT General Secretary Bob Crow said:
“We have laid out the clearest possible evidence to the Mayor and his officials that if he breaks his promises and slashes station staffing numbers he will be giving the green light to disaster and yet he is failing to take any account of the hard facts of these three recent incidents – each of which could have had lethal consequences.
“Boris Johnson opposed these very cuts before he was elected and now stands accused of rank political opportunism as his officials take the axe to safety standards right across the tube network with the prospect of worse to come this autumn. That’s what RMT and TSSA are striking over - the whole future of a safe tube system is now on the block.”