Strike off as management and police act on Underground safety

01 July 2005

To avert the threat of industrial action by ASLEF drivers on the District Line, London Underground and the British Transport Police today announced a series of initiatives to target yobs, vandals and trespassers on the line. As a result, proposed strike action has been averted.

The threatened strikes were the result of ASLEF insisting that both its members and the public were in danger from gang violence and intimidating behaviour in East London. ASLEF’s London organizer Steve Grant says attacks on District Line trains have increased by 50%. 

One driver was left with glass in his eye after a brick was hurled through his windscreen. In another incident youths were arrested at Upminster with ball-bearing-firing guns. 

Steve said today that the dispute resulted from London Underground’s consistent failure to live up to promises to increase security. However, he recommended that the strikes were called off because of today’s initiatives by LU and the transport police. This was endorsed by the union’s executive committee.

The two organisations announced that a joint operation targeting trespassers and vandals will commence on Saturday 28 May and throughout the half term break.

It will involve mobile patrols, off road motorbikes and a helicopter and will monitor the District, Central, Metropolitan and Bakerloo lines. 

The helicopter will be manned by police trained observers who will communicate with officers on the ground as well as having the latest technology including infra red imaging.

The union’s acting General Secretary Keith Norman said he was pleased at the outcome but saddened at how difficult it had proven to achieve something blatantly and obviously sensible.

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