NEWS

CP Rail strike has Montreal commuters scrambling

02/16/2015 06:50 EST | Updated 04/18/2015 05:59 EDT
About 19,000 commuters in the Montreal area are scrambling to find a way to work or school this morning.

As part of the CP Rail strike that began Sunday, there is no AMT commuter-train service this morning on the Vaudreuil-Hudson, St-Jérôme and Candiac lines.

The Agence métropolitaine de transport (the commuter train transit authority known as the AMT)  has a contract with CP for those three commuters lines. CN Rail engineers drive the trains running on the other AMT lines.

To help ease the burden on commuters, the AMT said it would run 60 buses along those lines to help ensure commuters get to work on Monday.

Details of the alternative transit plan can be found on the AMT's website.

But the transit authority said it would take 700 buses to provide the same level of service the commuter trains fulfill.

“Some people will need to take their car this morning or go with other workers in their car,” AMT president Nicolas Girard told CBC Montreal’s Daybreak.

“I think the situation right now is unfair, is unacceptable and I think our customers are being held hostage.”

The AMT was denied an injunction on Friday to keep its commuter trains running. Girard said the AMT would try for another injunction again today.

Back-to-work legislation expected

The federal government is expected to introduce legislation today to end the strike.

A notice to allow for introduction of the bill was placed on the Commons order paper late Friday afternoon.

The strike against CP Rail began after contract talks failed to reach an agreement before the midnight deadline.

The Teamsters Canada Rail Conference union represents 3,300 locomotive engineers and other train workers at CP Rail.

In a statement issued Sunday morning, the company said it would deploy management personnel to operate a reduced freight service on its Canadian network.

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