Dorset Bus Drivers Prepare To Strike On Monday
4:03pm 14th January 2014
(Updated 6:42am 15th January 2014)
Weymouth and Bridport's leading commercial bus service is expected to be largely affected next week.
First bus drivers are putting the brakes on the fleet and going on strike.
Members of the UNITE Union are walking out on Monday (20th January) in a row over pay.
There's expected to be disruption across the network but First say they have contingency plans in place to minimise any negative impact on passengers.
Unite say drivers currently earn £8.30 an hour and their regional colleagues earn more than £10 an hour.
The First Company says an offer of a 1.5% pay rise has been largely accepted by other staff.
Directors have told Wessex FM the strike action is "disappointing."
Marc Reddy, Managing Director, First Hampshire and Dorset, said: "We are very disappointed that our drivers have seen fit to take industrial action. This has come after several months of discussions about pay with local union representatives when we put forward various options to them during the talks. The 1.5 per cent pay rise we have offered them has already been accepted favourably by our other employees in Dorset and we remain open to further discussions with our drivers at the two depots at any time."
He continued: "We shall continue urging the union and our drivers to pursue negotiations rather than take this disruptive industrial action.
"However, I can assure our customers that contingency plans are already in place to minimise any possible negative impact the drivers' action may have on them. We will also keep them informed through Twitter, Facebook and our website about any changes to their services which may result."