Commuters warned of disruption this week

Union members are taking industrial action and will be shutting down for two hours tomorrow morning and afternoon. Picture: NCA NewsWire / Damian Shaw

Sydney commuters have been warned about expected disruptions to the lightrail services after it was announced that workers will be striking this week.

For four hours, tram and bus division union members of the Rail, Tram and Bus Union (RTBU) will stop driving lightrail vehicles for two hours on Wednesday, and will refuse to check tickets for 24 hours.

The strike is due to unfair pay discrepancy for their Parramatta counterparts.

Rail Network
The strike will cause delays and disruptions tomorrow. Picture: NCA NewsWire / Nikki Short

The strikes will take place between 8am to 10am in the morning and 4pm to 6pm in the afternoon, and will affect the L1, L2 and L3 lines.

This comes after the union claims Transdev refuses to pay workers in Parramatta the same pay and conditions as workers in Sydney, despite months of negotiations and are left with “no option” but to strike.

While the main strike will take place on Wednesday, action will kick off this morning with workers refusing to wear uniforms, check tickets and drivers “going slow” on every fourth tram.

Workers are taking industrial action of pay differences between those working in Sydney and those working in Parramatta. Picture: NCA NewsWire / Damian Shaw

A statement from the RTBU states that “over 98 per cent of the workforce voted to take protected industrial action over pay issues”.

This industrial action comes in the same week as tram testing on the 12km Parramatta line from Westmead to Carlingford takes place between 6am and 6pm.

RTBU Tram and Bus Divison Secretary David Babineua expressed his disappointment that workers had been “left with no other option” but to take action.

“The company is attempting to pay Western Sydney workers up to $5 an hour an hour less than workers in other areas. At a time when workers across the board are struggling with cost of living pressures, that’s an insult to workers and their families,” Mr Babineua said.

“Light rail workers won’t allow their fellow workers in Parramatta to be paid less simply because of where they’re based, nor will we allow workers in other areas to be paid less than they deserve.

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - NewsWire Photos -  Picture: NCA NewsWire /, Nicholas Eagar
Those planning to use the light rail to commute to Vivid Festival of Lights in Sydney are being warned to plan ahead. Picture: NCA NewsWire / Nicholas Eagar

“Workers from all areas of Sydney are doing it tough and failing to recognise the financial pressures its workforce is not going to help solve the current impasse.”

Transdev has advised passengers to plan ahead, with Transdev Sydney managing director Arsene Durand-Raucher warning the disruption would affect schools, commuters and Vivid Festival patrons.

“We are working hard with transport partners to minimise impact to customers caused by this industrial action,” Mr Durand-Raucher told The Daily Telegraph.

“Customers should plan ahead and consider alternate transport options this Wednesday or, if possible, avoid non-essential travel on the trams.

Mr Durand-Raucher told Newswire that Transdev Sydney has alerted schools located near the light rail and will have personnel on the ground to manage the disruption.

“We continue to work closely with Transport to minimise impacts to Parramatta Light Rail testing and commissioning activities,” he said.