Aberdeen bus drivers could strike after vote to turn down new contract offer from First

Aberdeen bus drivers could strike after voting overwhelmingly to reject a new pay deal.

A turnout of 74.9% of Unite members who work for First Bus saw 98.4% opt to turn down the proposed conditions. Only four members voted in favour of accepting the offer..

Claims have been made that changes to drivers’ contracts would see working hours extended, less holiday entitlement and a pay cut.

Unite has 347 drivers as members and the union’s Mike Flynn said: “We will have a meeting next week with management to see where they want to go with this.

“Our members have overwhelmingly decided to vote against these conditions that would see around £40-£60 taken away from them a week. We will now start the legal ballot requirement for strike action.

He added: “We have seen more people do stuff like banking and shopping online, and now fewer people are taking the bus.

“The company hasn’t done anything to combat this and is now trying to recoup the money from the drivers with this new contract.”

The changes in conditions suggested by the bus operator are aimed at safeguarding services and jobs for the future according to the company.

First Aberdeen managing director Andrew Jarvis said: “We were disappointed by the result of the ballot and are due to meet Unite representatives next week for further talks.”