7 December 2017
RMT Press Office:
The day after Stagecoach announce massive profits RMT demands urgent action over rodent infestation on East Coast trains.
RAIL UNION RMT today demanded urgent action over rodent infestation on Virgin Trains East Coast after pictures emerged clearly showing droppings in the food preparation and kitchen area on a VTEC unit. – pictures attached
RMT has written to the company both demanding action and warning of the risks to passengers and staff from the clear evidence that there is a major hygiene and health and safety issue on VTEC trains.
The news of the rodent scandal comes just a day after VTEC’s major partner, Stagecoach, announced an 8% increase in profits and 24 hours before RMT begins balloting members for industrial action as the company attempts to hammer staff with an imposed pay increase and associated attacks on working conditions.
RMT General Secretary Mick Cash said:
“It is frankly appalling that VTEC, an alliance of Stagecoach and Virgin, have allowed this rodent scandal to fester on their trains regardless of the risks to staff and passengers alike from the exposure to these droppings and the obvious health consequences.
“This franchise is out of control. Only last week VTEC were given what amounts to a tax-payer funded bail-out of £2 billion by the Government while at the same time they have forced a major dispute with RMT through their sneering attitude to their staff over pay and conditions.
“RMT is demanding urgent action over the rodent infestation and an absolute assurance that staff forced to work in these shocking conditions will not be denied the duty of care that VTEC owe them.
Passengers paying through the nose to travel on these trains will also be rightly angry to hear about VTEC’s shocking attitude to hygiene and health and safety.
“RMT wants action and we want it now.”