Update: Bus drivers in strike action

Dorset Echo: Bus drivers in strike action Bus drivers in strike action

BUS services around Weymouth, Portland and west Dorset could be crippled next week due to a drivers’ strike.

Members of the Unite union who work for the area’s main bus provider, First, are planning a 24-hour walkout on Monday, January 20 due to a row over pay.

It will affect the Weymouth and Bridport depots.

A First spokesman said it was hoped to run as many buses as possible and that services will run on most routes.

But one driver said that although school and colleges services would be provided, other passenger routes would be severely hit.

“It’s going to be absolute murder,” he said.

“We don’t want to do it but we have been forced into action.

“Our pay is well below those who work at the Yeovil depot which we think is unfair.”

The driver claimed the company had offered a small amount of extra money but claimed that holidays would be affected by the deal.

He said the action would begin early on Monday and continue for 24 hours. Picket lines will be in place at the depots.

No-one from Unite was available for comment.

Managing director for First Hampshire and Dorset Marc Reddy said: “We are very disappointed that our drivers have seen fit to take industrial action.

“This has come after several months of discussions about pay with local union representatives when we put forward various options to them during the talks.

“The 1.5 per cent pay rise we have offered them has already been accepted favourably by our other employees in Dorset and we remain open to further discussions with our drivers at the two depots at any time.”

Mr Reddy added: “We shall continue urging the union and our drivers to pursue negotiations rather than take this disruptive industrial action.

“However, I can assure our customers that contingency plans are already in place to minimise any possible negative impact the drivers’ action may have on them.

“We will also keep them informed through Twitter, Facebook and our website about any changes to their services which may result.”

Transport spokesman for Weymouth and Portland Borough Council Christine James said: “I have sympathy for both sides.

“I’m not sure what the options are but I hope there can be more discussions so an agreement can be reached.”

Comments (13)

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2:33pm Mon 13 Jan 14

smilealoft44 says...

Low wages , sounds right for Dorset.
Low wages , sounds right for Dorset. smilealoft44

2:38pm Mon 13 Jan 14

MaidofDorset says...

Surely the going rate for driving a bus should be the same for Weymouth and Bridport as Yeovil?

Or is Yeovil a high risk area?
Surely the going rate for driving a bus should be the same for Weymouth and Bridport as Yeovil? Or is Yeovil a high risk area? MaidofDorset

6:31pm Mon 13 Jan 14

Zummerzet Lad says...

There has always been a difference between Yeovil and Weymouth even back in the days of Southern National, although Yeovil seemed the poor relations back then. I think this problem may have arose because Yeovil did for a while come under First Somerset which may have had different pay scales. One other thing Yeovil's fleet is a lot older than Weymouth's so other differences exist between the two.
There has always been a difference between Yeovil and Weymouth even back in the days of Southern National, although Yeovil seemed the poor relations back then. I think this problem may have arose because Yeovil did for a while come under First Somerset which may have had different pay scales. One other thing Yeovil's fleet is a lot older than Weymouth's so other differences exist between the two. Zummerzet Lad

7:48pm Mon 13 Jan 14

westbaywonder says...

MaidofDorset wrote:
Surely the going rate for driving a bus should be the same for Weymouth and Bridport as Yeovil?

Or is Yeovil a high risk area?
Littlemoor seems to be the high risk area but also the one planned to have leather seats and wi-fi on its buses.

Strange, why would an old girl of 80 want wi-fi on a bus with all her shopping on a tuesday morning LOL
[quote][p][bold]MaidofDorset[/bold] wrote: Surely the going rate for driving a bus should be the same for Weymouth and Bridport as Yeovil? Or is Yeovil a high risk area?[/p][/quote]Littlemoor seems to be the high risk area but also the one planned to have leather seats and wi-fi on its buses. Strange, why would an old girl of 80 want wi-fi on a bus with all her shopping on a tuesday morning LOL westbaywonder

8:39pm Mon 13 Jan 14

2539 says...

I Was gutted when I called them to see if they were allowing vaulentry stand in drivers. Always fancied a go in a bus. Given the choice it would be the X53 double-decker. Big old lump mind!
I Was gutted when I called them to see if they were allowing vaulentry stand in drivers. Always fancied a go in a bus. Given the choice it would be the X53 double-decker. Big old lump mind! 2539

8:43pm Mon 13 Jan 14

DorsetReader says...

Why spend all this money on these new buses for Littlemoor, where I live, then not give the drivers what they deserve pay wise. After all it is not just driving the buses they have to do but also they have to put up with all the abuse and stupid comments they get. They deserve better pay.
Why spend all this money on these new buses for Littlemoor, where I live, then not give the drivers what they deserve pay wise. After all it is not just driving the buses they have to do but also they have to put up with all the abuse and stupid comments they get. They deserve better pay. DorsetReader

8:56pm Mon 13 Jan 14

peskykat says...

DorsetReader wrote:
Why spend all this money on these new buses for Littlemoor, where I live, then not give the drivers what they deserve pay wise. After all it is not just driving the buses they have to do but also they have to put up with all the abuse and stupid comments they get. They deserve better pay.
Well said !!!, also there is no way i would get my laptop out enroute to littlemoor - might get rob on my arrival there. Good luck to the drivers.
[quote][p][bold]DorsetReader[/bold] wrote: Why spend all this money on these new buses for Littlemoor, where I live, then not give the drivers what they deserve pay wise. After all it is not just driving the buses they have to do but also they have to put up with all the abuse and stupid comments they get. They deserve better pay.[/p][/quote]Well said !!!, also there is no way i would get my laptop out enroute to littlemoor - might get rob on my arrival there. Good luck to the drivers. peskykat

9:19pm Mon 13 Jan 14

dorsetnob says...

If its such a good wage offer why are they taking this action ?? 1.5% wage offer wow so generous considering the companys turnover. Over 2 billion mmmmm somethings wrong !
If its such a good wage offer why are they taking this action ?? 1.5% wage offer wow so generous considering the companys turnover. Over 2 billion mmmmm somethings wrong ! dorsetnob

3:59am Tue 14 Jan 14

dorseteye says...

the drivers only want what other depots are getting , they are one of the lowest paid first depots in the uk. and the offer of 1.5 per cent is miserly. utility bills and food shopping increases alone have resulted in a 20-25 pound a week increase for the average family alone. is it right that these drivers get x amount an hour but the driver down the road driving the same bus for the same company doing the same hours and being paid by the same wage department is on 10 per cent more pay a week . only a couple of weeks ago they were bragging they have brand new buses for littlemoor costing a half a million pounds yet are arguing over pennies for the guys that have to drive these buses safetly and be responsible for hundreds of lives per day. a driver with a wife and 2 children is actually better off claiming benefits at the minute than struggling week in and week out on the low wages these drivers are said to be getting and the government wonder why they cant get people back into work. its not cutting the benefits the government need to be doing its making sure people going out to work are actually getting a fair days pay for a fair days graft ...ill be supporting these drivers on the monday
the drivers only want what other depots are getting , they are one of the lowest paid first depots in the uk. and the offer of 1.5 per cent is miserly. utility bills and food shopping increases alone have resulted in a 20-25 pound a week increase for the average family alone. is it right that these drivers get x amount an hour but the driver down the road driving the same bus for the same company doing the same hours and being paid by the same wage department is on 10 per cent more pay a week . only a couple of weeks ago they were bragging they have brand new buses for littlemoor costing a half a million pounds yet are arguing over pennies for the guys that have to drive these buses safetly and be responsible for hundreds of lives per day. a driver with a wife and 2 children is actually better off claiming benefits at the minute than struggling week in and week out on the low wages these drivers are said to be getting and the government wonder why they cant get people back into work. its not cutting the benefits the government need to be doing its making sure people going out to work are actually getting a fair days pay for a fair days graft ...ill be supporting these drivers on the monday dorseteye

7:35am Tue 14 Jan 14

arlbergbahn says...

westbaywonder wrote:
MaidofDorset wrote:
Surely the going rate for driving a bus should be the same for Weymouth and Bridport as Yeovil?

Or is Yeovil a high risk area?
Littlemoor seems to be the high risk area but also the one planned to have leather seats and wi-fi on its buses.

Strange, why would an old girl of 80 want wi-fi on a bus with all her shopping on a tuesday morning LOL
Nasty things, they are. They may have leather seats but they're horrible rattly uncomfortable little things.
The buses I mean, not the passengers.
[quote][p][bold]westbaywonder[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]MaidofDorset[/bold] wrote: Surely the going rate for driving a bus should be the same for Weymouth and Bridport as Yeovil? Or is Yeovil a high risk area?[/p][/quote]Littlemoor seems to be the high risk area but also the one planned to have leather seats and wi-fi on its buses. Strange, why would an old girl of 80 want wi-fi on a bus with all her shopping on a tuesday morning LOL[/p][/quote]Nasty things, they are. They may have leather seats but they're horrible rattly uncomfortable little things. The buses I mean, not the passengers. arlbergbahn

10:16pm Tue 14 Jan 14

weymouthfox says...

I support our badly paid bus drivers. They do a very good job and should be paid the same as in Yeovil.
I support our badly paid bus drivers. They do a very good job and should be paid the same as in Yeovil. weymouthfox

11:51pm Tue 14 Jan 14

not too distant says...

No percentage wage increase should ever be below inflation..
No percentage wage increase should ever be below inflation.. not too distant

12:27pm Wed 15 Jan 14

Fred Kite says...

Anyone who drives bus round rural West Dorset should be paid danger money as extra.
Anyone who drives bus round rural West Dorset should be paid danger money as extra. Fred Kite

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