Strike by Underground workers causes chaos for commuters

Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union (RMT) walked out for 24 hours.

01 March 2022

A strike by London Underground workers caused travel chaos on Tuesday, crippling Tube services and causing misery for commuters trying to get to work.

Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union (RMT) walked out for 24 hours in a bitter dispute over jobs, pensions and conditions.

The entire underground was suspended in the rush hour, although limited services returned later on a few lines.

People tried to get to work on buses or in taxis but huge queues formed, forcing many to give up and go home.

Road congestion around the capital was at its highest level of the year so far as some commuters attempted to drive through the capital.

The disruption came on the same day as Tube and bus fares went up by an average of 4.8%.

Picket lines were mounted outside Tube stations, while the union called on London Mayor Sadiq Khan to intervene.

Another 24-hour walkout will be held on Thursday, and there will be knock-on effects on services on Wednesday and Friday.

Tube strike
A sign at Paddington Station in London during a strike by members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union (Joe Sene/PA)

The union fears that spending cuts will lead to hundreds of job losses and reductions in pensions and working conditions.

TfL chief operating officer Andy Lord said: “We haven’t proposed any changes to pensions or terms and conditions, and nobody has or will lose their jobs because of the proposals we have set out, so this action is completely unnecessary.

“We know our customers deserve better than this and that is why we’re urging the RMT to talk to us so we can find a resolution to this dispute and call off this action, which is threatening London’s recovery from the pandemic.”

Tube strike
Commuters at Liverpool Street underground station in London during a strike by members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union (Joe Pickover/PA)

A spokesman for Mr Khan said the strikes will cause disruption to Londoners and businesses trying to recover from two devastating years.

They added: “It will also damage TfL’s revenues at a time when TfL is already under huge financial strain due to the pandemic.

“TfL are working to mitigate the impact of the strikes but disruption is inevitable.”

RMT general secretary Mick Lynch said: “Sadiq Khan should be standing up to Tory ministers who want to needlessly attack jobs, pensions and conditions of key transport workers.

“It is this political failure that has left Tube workers with no choice but to strike this week.

“Our members have been left paying the price for a turf war between City Hall and the government and they are not having it, as can be seen right across London today.”

More from Perspective

Get a free copy of our print edition


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Fill out this field
Fill out this field
Please enter a valid email address.
You need to agree with the terms to proceed

Your email address will not be published. The views expressed in the comments below are not those of Perspective. We encourage healthy debate, but racist, misogynistic, homophobic and other types of hateful comments will not be published.