Rail strike threat after Potters Bar inquest

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The Independent Online

Union leaders today raised the threat of industrial action in the railway industry unless urgent assurances were given on safety in the wake of the inquest into the Potters Bar train crash.

The Rail Maritime and Transport union wrote to Transport Secretary Phillip Hammond, the Office of Rail Regulation and the Health and Safety Executive demanding to know that action is being taken on rail safety following notice from the judge at the inquest that there was a continuing risk of fatalities eight years on from the disaster.

The union said it will not tolerate any delaying tactics and will consider a ballot for action of all railway workers, including Network Rail employees, contractors and train operating company staff, if safety assurances were not made.

General secretary Bob Crow said: "It was RMT that called on the judge to serve notice on Network Rail and the safety authorities and his warnings on current threat to life could not have been clearer.

"We now want urgent assurances from the Government and the authorities that the death trap situation on Britain's railways is being addressed and that working and travelling conditions are safe. If we don't get those assurances we will consider a ballot for action involving all rail staff."