London's transport network is set to face major disruption next week if a planned 24-hour strike by Tube drivers goes ahead, Transport for London (TfL) warned today.
The transport body is in the midst of finalising plans to assess what level of service it could run for Thursday 5 October when the walkout is planned, but warned today it's expecting some severe problems across the whole of the Underground.
Nigel Holness, director of network operations for London Underground, said:
Should the planned strike action go ahead, there will be substantial disruption.
We will do everything possible to ensure customers can get around on alternative transport services and have the right information to help them do this.
Extra buses and Santander Cycle hubs will be provided, while TfL is currently exploring options to help get supporters to England’s football match against Slovenia at Wembley Stadium that evening.
The strike is over a dispute regarding working conditions.
Train drivers' union Aslef said London Underground had failed to deliver on commitments to improve work/life balance made as part of a 2015 pay settlement.
TfL has been working with Aslef and the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union which has raised concerns over the issue but hasn't balloted members, to trial a four-day working week on the Jubilee Line.
The trial finished earlier this month and TfL plans to analyse the results with both unions.
The union has also taken issue with what it said was lack of progress made on pro-rata working arrangements. Aslef's organiser on the London Underground, Finn Brennan, said London Underground had "refused to make any detailed proposals" on allowing drivers to reduce the number of shifts they worked.
Talks were held between the two parties at conciliation service Acas this week, but they have not yet reached a resolution, with more scheduled for next Monday.
Holness added: "We are committed to ensuring that our employees are able to maintain a good balance between their work and personal lives and we have been working closely with the unions on new ways to achieve this.
"I encourage the Aslef leadership to continue working with us constructively rather than moving towards unnecessary strike action."
It's not just the Underground set for travel disruption on the 5 October either. Separately, rail strikes are planned on the same day across Southern rail, Greater Anglia, Arriva Rail North and Merseyrail, by the RMT union in a row over the role of the guard.