“It will be very slow,” the woman behind the ticket window at Brussels Central station tells me. She looks at me like I’m making a big mistake – she would turn out to be right. Getting to France from Brussels to cover the rail strikes that are paralysing the country is proving rather difficult. It’s normally a breezy half an hour to Lille on a high speed TGV from The Independent’s bureau in the Belgian capital, but those few services that are still running were booked up weeks in advance. I had managed to snag a ticket on the Eurostar, but that was then cancelled too, so decide to do the entire journey by slow Belgian suburban services – which aren’t on strike despite sometimes venturing over the border into France. It would take a while, but get me there eventually, or so I thought. Read more Eurostar cancels trains as Macron protests erupt across Paris An hour into my journey my optimism is shattered when a … [Read more...] about French rail strikes: Just how effective are the anti-Macron walkouts?
National rail strike
Paris (AFP) - French railway unions used to be able to cripple the country by blocking the train network. But when workers walked off the job on Tuesday, new technology helped reduce the misery for commuters and companies. In 1995, when drivers and other staff on the national network downed tools, commuters faced hellish traffic jams for nearly three weeks, while companies struggled with absent staff and lost working hours. Some Parisians remember hitch-hiking around the capital, standing on roads with their thumbs up and waiting for a ride. Just over twenty years later, the internet, mobile phones and new ways of working meant that staff and travellers were better informed and better prepared as the massive rail disruption began. After days of warning travellers about mass cancellations, state rail giant SNCF issued real-time information on their website and phone app, which helped reduce frustration at stations. As a result, instead of the scenes of chaos on overcrowded platforms … [Read more...] about Start-ups, smartphones help French dodge rail strike
France awoke this morning to “Black Tuesday” as mass rail strikes brought much of the country’s trains to a halt in the sternest test yet of Emmanuel Macron’s reformist mettle. With just one in eight fast TGV trains running nationally and one in five regional trains, commuters and tourists alike face an arduous task reaching their destinations as national operator SNCF warned of “severe disruption”. Platforms at Gare du Nord, Paris's busiest railway station, were so packed that some commuters fell onto the tracks and had to be helped back up. Other stations were all but deserted this morning. “People anticipated. I thought there would be a huge crowd,” one commuter in Nice told AFP. London to Paris and Brussels Eurostars was also affected, with three quarters of trains still running but 15 cancelled and some scheduled times and departures changed. Passengers travelling to and from Disneyland Paris were warned … [Read more...] about ‘Black Tuesday’ brings France to a halt as Macron pledges to stand firm over 36 days of rail strikes
0 Comments France hit by major rail strike BelfastTelegraph.co.uk A major French railway strike has brought the country’s famed high-speed trains to a halt, leaving passengers stranded and posing the biggest test so far for President Emmanuel Macron’s economic strategy. https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/world-news/france-hit-by-major-rail-strike-36769036.html https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/world-news/article36769034.ece/a7fc6/AUTOCROP/h342/bpanews_f39ef196-27e6-4a38-8285-6f69f956be03_1 Email A major French railway strike has brought the country’s famed high-speed trains to a halt, leaving passengers stranded and posing the biggest test so far for President Emmanuel Macron’s economic strategy. The SNCF national rail authority said about 12% of trains are running on Tuesday, in the first of a series of strikes set to last three months. Passengers are packing platforms or hitching rides on traffic-clogged roads and sharing travel tips … [Read more...] about France hit by major rail strike
The RMT union announced further strikes this week after what it describes as a “snub” by Northern Rail. Union employees went on strike on Monday 26 March between 00:01am and 23:59pm, and are doing so again today during the same hours. But why are union members striking? Why are Northern Rail employees going on strike? Northern Rail has plans to increase the number of driver only controlled services. This will likely reduce the number of conductors on trains. According to the RMT website, the union has called strike action “over attacks on the role of the safety-critical guard and the extension of driver only operation”, which it says “has been taken in the name of increased profits”. RMT claims Northern Rail continues to “snub union calls for meaningful talks.” While the union argues that safety will be compromised by the extension of driver only services, Northern … [Read more...] about Northern Rail strike: When is it and what trains are cancelled over Easter?