A labour union is calling for a full investigation into Monday’s fatal accident involving a bus driver, with reports of bus wars emerging in the background over the company’s plan to introduce a new split-shift schedule.
Cyprus Public Transport, an umbrella company for Nicosia Public Transport and Larnaca Public Transport, has received criticism from PEO union officials over the company’s plans to introduce a split-shift schedule for bus drivers on a seven-day plan.
According to the new plan, bus drivers would not be paid overtime after business hours and weekends as new schedules would be based on a 7-day split-shift roster instead of 5 days currently including shifts paid overtime.
Split-shifts, designed for employees’ workdays to be split into two or more parts including breaks between shifts, would still include days off while also requiring drivers sometimes to work a weekend shift on normal salary.
The union says a new split-shift system would mean bus drivers who get a break in the daytime would end up going home late in the evening without getting any real rest during the day
But the union says the new split-shift system would not benefit its members, saying bus drivers who get a break during the daytime would end up going home late in the evening without getting any real rest during their daytime break.
According to Philenews, Cyprus Public Transport officials met on Monday to discuss the company’s next step, following PEO’s earlier plans to call for a strike.
The company reportedly is backing away from at least some aspects in introducing a new shift schedule, according to Philenews citing a three-hour at company headquarters on Monday.
But following Monday’s death of a bus driver in Nicosia, who was crushed by his own bus during an incident still under investigation, PEO also issued a statement calling for a full investigation into “other factors.”
“There ought to be an investigation into the work hours for drivers and stress associated with it, training that ought to be received by drivers, and even vehicle suitability regardless if buses are new,” PEO said.
The bus company also said it was cooperating fully with authorities to determine the cause of the fatal accident involving one of its bus drivers.
PEO has been against the split-shift changes being pushed by the new company, which took over bus operations in Nicosia and Larnaca just one week ago.
The union said they were calling on the labour minister to jump in and bring about results in the dispute between the union and the bus company, saying its members would not accept unilateral actions by the employer.