Railways said that the emergency schedule started as planned. As in previous GDL labor disputes, one in five trains is in use on long-distance transport. Travelers from Austria are also affected.
Deutsche Bahn has experienced disruptions in passenger traffic since Wednesday morning due to a strike by train drivers. Railways informed that the emergency schedule has started as planned. As in previous labor disputes with the GDL union, one in five trains is in use on long-distance transport. There are also extensive restrictions on regional transport. Transdev, which operates regional railways in the northwest and east of Germany, is also on strike.
The strike will not affect ÖBB traffic via Deutsche Eck, but Deutsche Bahn (DB) and ÖBB's long-distance connections to Munich or further north. This is because trains starting or ending in Germany only travel to the respective border station on the Austrian border or are completely canceled due to the transfer of train drivers at the border. However, trains will sometimes be sent to Munich via the Brenner line, ÖBB said.
ÖBB and DB have found a solution for the Salzburg-Munich route: their tickets are also valid for hourly local transport. Westbahn trains, on the other hand, go to Munich as train drivers are not transferred at the border. GDL's industrial action against Deutsche Bahn's freight transport began on Tuesday evening. Until recently, the railways and Transdev tried to prevent the strike legally. The Hesse state labor court finally rejected the application for an interim injunction at the second instance on Tuesday evening.
GDL boss defends strike
GDL boss Klaus Weselski backed the strike and promised further action. “If nothing happens by Friday, we will take a break and move on to the next industrial action,” he told ZDF's “Morgenmagazin” after the strike began. He criticized the Railways' latest offer as a provocation. At its core, the conflict revolved around the union's demand to reduce the working week from 38 hours to 35 hours for shift workers with full pay. Deutsche Bahn rejected this, and in its most recent offer revealed the possibility of expanding existing working hours models. Employees may decide to work fewer hours per week, but accept financial losses in return. GDL declines the offer.
Veselsky announced that negotiations with the railway had failed. As part of the expanded offer, the group called for further talks on Wednesday. The union did not respond to this. Negotiations with Transdev also failed.
In the fare dispute, GDL has already called two warning strikes, which lasted for a maximum of 24 hours on passenger transport. The current strike lasts till 6 pm on Friday. In December, the union voted its members on indefinite strikes. 97 percent of participants were in favor of this. Since then, longer strikes are possible. (APA/dpa)