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ARTC industrial action terminated

artc action

Disruptive industrial action on New South Wales’ ARTC rail services has been called off at the last minute.

The planned 72-hour stoppage at the Junee and Broadmeadow train control centres would have affected interstate freight between Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane, as well as trains leaving Sydney for Adelaide and Perth.

Grain services in NSW, including export grain intended for the ports of Newcastle and Port Kembla, would have been brought to a standstill, while all Hunter Valley coal trains would have stopped.

The action would also have roped in XPT passenger trains between Sydney-Brisbane and Sydney-Melbourne, and the Xplorer passenger train services between Sydney-Canberra and Sydney-Armidale/Moree.

Last night the Fair Work Commission terminated the Protected Industrial Action after an application by the ARTC, with the orders not opposed by the unions.

An ARTC spokesman said network operations are expected to continue as normal over the coming days.

“ARTC is committed to working with all involved to reach a positive outcome and deliver fair working conditions for all our staff,” he said.

The NSW Enterprise Agreement covers about 800 employees in NSW.

Eight meetings have been held between ARTC, Unions NSW and the employee bargaining representatives ahead of the current EBA expiring on June 11.

A further conciliation meeting between the parties and the Fair Work Commission was held on June 27 to resolve outstanding issues.

ARTC presented a draft Enterprise Bargaining Agreement to unions and employees that has put forward a 11.5 per cent wage increase over the three years of the proposed agreement, in addition to improved allowance and leave conditions.

ARTC is putting a vote to its members this week to accept the offer (voting opens tomorrow). The result of the vote should be known early Friday evening. If there is a positive result, ARTC will seek ratification with the Fair Work Commission.