Major delays on Muni as worker ‘sickout’ continues

SAN FRANCISCO (BCN)

The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency is warning customers of a second day of major systemwide delays on Muni Tuesday due to a “sickout” by many employees stemming from labor contract negotiations.

The agency will add an additional 100 vehicles to the system Tuesday but notified commuters to expect service disruptions, Muni officials said.

All express and limited buses will be stopping at every stop unless the bus reaches full capacity, according to Muni officials.

Cable cars will be supplemented with limited shuttle buses, Muni officials said.

Customers are advised to find alternative means of transportation, according to Muni officials.

BART is honoring all Muni fares between the Daly City and Embarcadero stations, Muni officials said.

On Monday Muni ran on a third of its normal capacity due to workers calling in sick, agency spokesman Paul Rose said.

Many commuters experienced longer wait times and struggled to make their way around San Francisco on Monday.

The union has been in a contentious contract dispute with the SFMTA over the past two months and voted last week on a proposed agreement with the agency.

TWU Local 250-A members voted overwhelmingly to reject the proposal on Friday, according to results posted on the union’s website.

Union president Eric Williams said in a statement on the site that it was an “unfair contract” and that the “city devalued our service as they proposed unreasonable take aways.”

The proposed contract would give Muni workers an 11.45 percent raise over the next two years, bumping up operator pay to just under $32 per hour by July, according to Rose, the Muni spokesman.

However, the contract also proposes that workers contribute 7.5 percent to their pensions, an amount now covered by Muni.

Rose said the city pays 92.5 percent of transit operators’ pensions, an amount he said “is in line with most other city workers.”

The spokesman said Muni officials may not know until early Tuesday morning about whether another sickout is planned and said riders should know “some of the delays they saw today might occur tomorrow.”

Riders are encouraged to check the agency’s Twitter account at www.twitter.com/sfmta_muni or sign up for e-mail or text alerts at www.sfmta.com for updates.

More than 700,000 trips are made on Muni each day, according to Rose.

(Copyright 2014 Bay City News. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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