BOSSES are putting safety at risk with their attempts to break rail strikes on the day of the Grand National this weekend, rail union RMT said yesterday.
Onboard workers on Merseyrail, Northern and Southern are all set to down tools on Saturday as they resist the expansion of driver-only operation.
Merseytravel, which co-ordinates transport across Merseyside, hit out at the RMT over the strike.
Chief executive Frank Rogers said: “The RMT’s claim that this issue is about passenger safety falls apart when they are prepared to put the travelling public at risk by deliberately putting more pressure on a much reduced network.”
But RMT regional organiser John Tilley has written to Mr Rogers, pointing out that it is “Merseyrail’s legal responsibility — and not that of this trade union — to ensure the safe operation of its services.”
Seeking “urgent clarification” of the Merseytravel boss’s remarks, he said they amounted to an admission the company “is knowingly and deliberately putting Merseyrail passengers at additional risk.”
Mr Rogers said he had been referring to people travelling to the races by other means as a result of the rail strike.
“Consequently, I stand by my comment that you are prepared to put the travelling public at risk by deliberately putting more pressure on a much reduced network,” he said in a reply to Mr Tilley.
RMT said it would be reporting the matter to transport regulator the Office of Rail and Road.