Travel

(Corrected) Train, bus service could be interrupted 30 April, 1 May as Dutch transport unions announce more strikes

(Editor’s note: Due to translation errors from Dutch to English, the original post had some incorrect information. That has been corrected.)

Expats in the Netherlands, get ready for travel delays as transport unions announce a second round of train and bus strikes.

Dutch labor unions CNV and FNV are striking after they say bus companies ignored ultimatums union officials gave them about improving working conditions.

So, Arriva trains and regional buses won’t run on Monday, 30 April and Tuesday, 1 May.

Neither NS trains nor city transport in The Hague and Amsterdam will be affected, according to a news release from FNV. The RET city transport will run in Rotterdam, but not the RET regional buses.

The unions represent about 12,000 transit workers across the Netherlands working both for non-NS trains and private bus and train operators such as Hèrmes, part of Connexxion Public Transport/Transdev.

The employers had until Tuesday to meet the demands of the trade union and the bus drivers, according to the release.

From the release:

Members of FNV who work in regional transport want tough agreements about reducing work pressure. Employers refuse that. Passengers also suffer daily from the high workload. They are faced with delays due to tight driving times and therefore miss their connection.

The release hinted the union and bus companies might come to an agreement before Monday, but as of Monday morning, the strike is on.

On its website, the FNV states the union is organizing a march through Den Haag, capital of the Netherlands, tomorrow, 1 May. The union is picking up the cost of union members’ NS train tickets to Den Haag to add a certain amount of irony.

This would be the second transport strike since a one-day walkout in January, with the union upping the pressure to two days.

In January, the CNV/FNV strike cut bus and train service causing massive delays in Eindhoven, where Dispatches is based.

The unions struck then for better working conditions, saying extreme pressure to stick to their schedules forces them to go long periods without meals and bathroom breaks. The unions also are fighting for raises.

You can see further union updates here on the FNV website.

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