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SERVICES 
Friday, 28 December, 2001, 18:16 GMT
Train dispute talks deadlocked
Train station
Some drivers are refusing to work overtime
Talks to resolve a dispute which has brought disruption to rail passengers have ended in deadlock.

Train operators and union officials are planning further talks to end an unofficial overtime ban by drivers.

Some drivers are refusing to do overtime or work on rest days as they seek a 5,000 pay rise.

Services in Strathclyde, Lothian and Fife were delayed or cancelled on Thursday because of the industrial action by some drivers.

Queen Street
Some services have been cancelled
Staff at depots in Edinburgh and Yoker refused to work rest days as part of the pay dispute.

They are seeking a 5,000 increase in the average drivers' salary to 28,000 - the equivalent of a 22% pay rise.

The company has offered drivers 3%, and talks are continuing between ScotRail and the rail unions in an effort to end the overtime ban.

ScotRail said the number of cancellations on Thursday was in double figures, but insisted there had not been large-scale disruption.

Increased productivity

It said nine drivers in Glasgow and Edinburgh took action on Friday, but only a handful of services were affected.

The company told unions that its 3% pay rise is still on the table and any further increase would need to be self-financing through increased productivity.

ScotRail depends on drivers working overtime to maintain its services.

After talks on Friday, Nick Brown, ScotRail's acting managing director, said: "It was a very constructive meeting.

"The unions recognised the financial position of this company and that anything above 3% would have to be self-financing through increased productivity.

"There is no way that this company could afford to meet the aspirations of a 5,000-a-year increase to 28,000-a-year for every driver."

Another meeting between the company and unions is now scheduled to take place on January 4.

See also:

27 Dec 01 | Scotland
Rail services hit by action
22 Jun 01 | UK
Train strike talks continue
23 Feb 00 | Scotland
Rail union to hold talks
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