December 08, 2009 02:00 ET

Scotrail Admit That They Are Prepared to Breach Contract Over Driver Only Operation

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM--(Marketwire - Dec. 8, 2009) - RAIL UNION RMT today accused Scotrail of openly admitting to MSP's that they are prepared to breach contract terms over train staffing levels as the campaign over the planned introduction of Driver Only Operation (DOO) on the new Edinburgh/Glasgow via Airdrie to Bathgate route intensified.

Under their contract with Scottish Ministers the train operator is required to have a second person on the train at all times. However, in a new briefing to MSP's Scotrail admit that "...there may be times when we may choose to operate a train without a second person..."

RMT have pointed out today that with a guard on the crew, rather than a ticket examiner, a train would not be allowed to leave the station without that guard present ensuring at least two members of crew are present at all times to deal with safety and security issues.

Bob Crow, RMT General Secretary, said:

"Scotrail have let the cat out of the bag. We now know that their reason for failing to bring guards onto the new Aidrie/Bathgate service is so that they can run trains with just one member of staff. No guard, no ticket examiner just the driver up in the cab with all of the security and safety risks that such a policy brings with it.

"If there's a shortage of ticket examiners then Scotrail are saying that they will breach the contract with Scottish Ministers and run the trains anyway. When they've done it once we have no doubt that they will try and get away with it over and over again, creating a massive security and safety risk for the travelling public while at the same time jacking up their own profits by saving money on staffing levels.

"The only safe solution is guards on the trains. That guarantees the security of the public and means that Scotrail cannot play fast and loose with their contractual commitments to the Scottish people."

Contact Information

    Geoff Martin
    0207 255 9146 or 07831 465 103
    RMT Scottish Region
    Phil McGarry
    07931 183 836