Deutsche Bahn: GDL starts strike in freight traffic

business Strike until Wednesday

GDL starts strike in freight transport

Trains stop in Germany for several days

Trains stop in Germany for several days

Source: dpa / Peter Endig

The trains have been standing still since Saturday afternoon: The GDL union has stopped Deutsche Bahn’s freight traffic. This could have consequences for the industry. This needs replenishment by Monday at the latest. But the strike is said to last longer.

Dhe strike of the union of German train drivers (GDL) in the freight transport of Deutsche Bahn (DB) has started. “We expect a tough stage,” said a spokesman for the freight transport division DB Cargo on Saturday evening.

At the weekend, the effects could therefore still be manageable, as there are generally fewer trains. From Monday onwards, the impact is expected to be greater because the industry will then need more supplies.

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The company has enough capacity to park stopped trains, the spokesman added. According to him, customers are informed. Business associations had previously warned that an interruption in the supply chain due to prolonged strikes in freight traffic would jeopardize the economic recovery after the Corona crisis.

“The German economy is only trying to gain a foothold after the corona pandemic,” said the President of the Confederation of German Employers’ Associations (BDA), Rainer Dulger. “That must not be jeopardized by the high economic costs of such a strike.” The strike should last more than three days until Wednesday morning.

Strike also in passenger traffic from Monday

The strike in freight traffic is to be followed by work stoppages in passenger traffic from Monday morning at 2 a.m. These work stoppages are also supposed to end on Wednesday at 2 a.m.

“A standstill in the improvement of services by the management of the DB leads directly to the standstill of the trains in Germany,” said GDL boss Claus Weselsky on Friday when the strike was announced. DB Personnel Director Martin Seiler described the labor dispute as “completely unnecessary and also completely superfluous.” Everything that is needed for a solution is on the table. “The only thing missing is the GDL’s willingness to negotiate.”

It is the second wave of strikes in the current collective bargaining dispute between GDL and DB. The union is calling for a two-stage wage increase of 3.2 percent, a corona bonus of 600 euros and better working conditions. The railway offers 3.2 percent more wages, but wants to implement the levels later and a longer term.

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