Sleeper Service Strike After Talks Fail

22 December 2015, 08:42 | Updated: 22 December 2015, 08:44

A 48-hour strike by workers on the Caledonian Sleeper service between Scotland and London will go ahead tonight after talks broke down.

Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union will walk out at 6.30pm, halting services.

The dispute is over union claims of defects to trains which it says pose safety threats.

The two sides met for last-ditch talks which ended without agreement just before midnight.

The union has raised issues including disconnected smoke detectors, lighting and heating systems not working, and loss of power during journeys.

RMT general secretary Mick Cash said: "The poor service to passengers, in conjunction with the company's failure to address the issues raised by RMT representatives and officials in talks right up to the wire late last night, reached the point where the union decided enough is enough and left us with no option but to put on industrial action before someone is injured.

"That action now goes ahead. Serco never had any intention of taking the talks process seriously and have treated both staff and public with complete contempt throughout.''

The sleeper franchise was awarded to Serco by the Scottish Government in March, taking over from First Group.