Tube strike live updates: London Underground chaos for commuters will continue overnight

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Around 700 passengers forced out after 'worst crowding seen at Clapham Junction in years' amid industrial action on London Ungeround

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The Independent Online

A London Underground strike prompted the evacuation of Britain's busiest station and chaos on the capital's roads.

An estimated 700 passengers were forced out of Clapham Junction, which is the UK's busiest 'interchange station', for around 30 minutes from 9am after the 'worst crowding' seen there in years.

The dispute over job cuts and ticket office closures meant hundreds of Transport for London staff either walked out or did not turn up for work between 6pm on Sunday and 6pm today.

“I was queuing for 40 minutes to get to my platform, then they announced the entire station was being evacuated 'for passenger safety' due to 'overcrowding'," said 25-year-old commuter Catherine Allison.

The industrial action, coordinated by the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union and the Transport Salaried Staff's Association (TSSA), closed the vast majority of underground lines.

The Victoria and Waterloo & City lines, plus key interchange stations including Victoria, King's Cross St Pancras, Waterloo, Paddington, Euston, Bank and London Bridge, were closed. The vast majority of lines crossing through the Zone 1 patch were also closed.

There was a reduced service on the District and Circle & Hammersmith lines, and the London Overground, DLR and Tram networks ran as normal.

“I'm giving up on even trying,” said software developer Rajiv Perseedoss, 30, who was trying to get to work in central London from Canary Wharf in the east of the city.

“I'm not a Tube worker, I don't know about their conditions, but whatever it is, they can't take it out on everybody.”

There was confusion however over the success of the strike. London Mayor Sadiq Khan, who during his mayoral campaign said there would be "zero" strikes if elected, said 33 per cent of the 270 stations were closed. BBC London meanwhile reported 44 per cent, and the TSSA said 96.3 per cent.

TSSA General Secretary Manuel Cortes said: “London Underground may tell you today that they are offering 600 jobs this year, but the Tube sheds 400 jobs a year through natural wastage. In reality the offer is just 200 and whilst it's a step in the right direction 200 jobs cannot plug the gaping hole that's been left in the system by devastating Tory attacks on TfL's budget."

The Tube is used by around 4.8m passengers each day.

 

 

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