Members of the public have been urged to check their travel plans as guards on ScotRail begin a series of strikes in a dispute over driver-only trains.
Contingency plans for the rail strike that begins today (Tuesday, June 21) have been discussed at a second meeting of the Scottish Government’s resilience committee, chaired by Minister for Transport and the Islands, Humza Yousaf.
The industrial action is the first in a series of planned strikes by members of the Rail and Maritime and Transport workers union.
It’s estimated ScotRail will still be able to run around 70% of services, but inevitably there will be an impact on passengers.
Inverurie to Aberdeen services will be running but on a reduced frequency while Aberdeen to Inverness services will be replaced with buses.
ScotRail have published alternative timetables to help the public plan their journeys.
The latest information and updated timetables will be available at www.scotrail.co.uk/strike.
A Multi-Agency Response Team (MART), involving representation from Network Rail, ScotRail, Traffic Scotland, Police Scotland, and Operating Companies will also be operational to monitor the situation on Tuesday, to help ensure the public has the latest information and agencies are equipped to respond to any major incidents.
Mr Yousaf said: “It’s very disappointing to see industrial action set to go ahead on our railways and we continue to urge further dialogue between ScotRail and the RMT Union.
“The walkout will have a significant impact on rail passengers who depend on these services, so I urge both parties to get back round the table immediately and work towards an agreement so that strikes can be avoided.
“We would also ask commuters to think now about the changes that they could make to help ease the pressure on the rail network. This could include working from home, car-sharing, avoiding travel at peak periods, or using buses to get to work.
“The Scottish Government’s Resilience operation is actively monitoring developments and receiving regular updates from the ScotRail Alliance, Transport Scotland and other key stakeholders.
“Travel operators websites, Travel Line and Traffic Scotland will have all of the latest information and people should plan ahead and leave more time for their journey.
“The Scottish Government’s priority will always be to ensure the safety and efficient running of our railways.”