TD claims Bus Éireann staff may strike over coronavirus safety concerns

TD claims Bus Éireann staff may strike over coronavirus safety concerns

A TD says a number of Bus Éireann drivers may go on strike on Tuesday because of concerns about safety during the pandemic.

People Before Profit TD Bríd Smith says some drivers don't feel safe with passengers boarding at the front of the bus and want permission to let people on and off using the centre doors.

A spokesman for the National Bus and Rail Union says a strike now would be "utterly inopportune" and says Bus Éireann is sourcing temporary safety shields to address drivers' concerns.

Ms Smith says the drivers she's heard from feel they need to act to protect themselves. She did however, acknowledge that these buses are taking "emergency workers and essential workers" to and from their jobs.

"These workers are very scared, they put themselves on the frontline and they are doing a great job taking other emergency workers and essential workers in and out while we are lockdown," she said.

Bus Éireann drivers are particular "exposed" as the majority of their buses don't have a protective screen between the driver and passengers, she claimed.

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