Thursday 26 September 2019 11:49 am

Tube drivers vow October disruption over 'excessive' track noise

Tube drivers are set to launch industrial action in October over the noise levels of train tracks, saying they cause “distraction, discomfort, and anxiety” for drivers and passengers.

The RMT union said 95 per cent of drivers voted in favour of taking action in a ballot covering the Jubilee, Central, Northern and Victoria Lines.

Read more: Commuters rescue man who fell onto Central Line Tube tracks

Industrial action will start from midnight on Thursday 10 October, with no end date yet set.

Union bosses said it would stop short of striking, but said the overwhelming majority in favour of action shows “the anger and frustration” of members over the issue.

“It is appalling that RMT driver members have had to resort to a programme of industrial action in order to force London Underground to take the issue of excessive track noise seriously,” RMT general secretary Mick Cash said.

“It should never have come to this and the blame lies solely with the employer and their failure to protect the workforce.”

A Transport for London (TfL) spokesperson stated: “We have met with the RMT on a number of occasions on the plans we have to tackle Tube noise and look forward to continuing to work with them to find a resolution.

“The health and safety of our staff and customers is our first priority and we have already agreed to provide a broader range of ear protection to drivers who wish to use it alongside plans for longer-term solutions to this complex issue.”

London’s transport body has made more comfortable ear defenders available to drivers on the affected lines.

The Northern Line’s High Barnet branch is the worst offender for noise levels, particularly around Finchley Central and between Euston and Tufnell Park, the RMT has said.

Read more: Tube drivers get ear defenders for noisy Northern Line track

TfL has cut noise levels near Finchley Central by lubricating a section of the track.

“Tube noise is highly unlikely to cause any long-term damage to our staff or customers’ hearing,” TfL added.

Main image: Getty