Warnings of delays as TMR workers spark strike

SPARKIES STRIKE: 40 Transport and Main Roads workers walk off the job today warning of delays.
SPARKIES STRIKE: 40 Transport and Main Roads workers walk off the job today warning of delays. Sarah Steger

THE ELECTRICAL Trade Union has warned motorists of lengthy traffic delays throughout South East Queensland today as Transport Main Roads electricians walk off the job.  

More than 40 traffic signal electricians from the Gold Coast, Brisbane and Sunshine Coast depots have walked off the job this morning as part of an ongoing industrial dispute.   

The dispute was sparked by an alleged changes to the process of staff progression through grading scales and the transition of labour hire employees to full time work.   

ETU Queensland and NT Organiser Brenton Muller accused the Department's industrial relations team of running 'personal agendas' against the state's traffic signal electricians and called on Minister Steven Miles to pull the Department into line.  

"They are seeking to reclassify the scaling experience of staff to diminish their pay and working conditions," he said.  

"These negotiations have been ongoing for more than six months, and today we are further from resolving these issues than we've ever been because of the Department's vindictive attitude towards staff.  

"All these workers are asking for is for the Department to implement state government policy. It is time these people are held to account."  

Mr Muller said there were staff in place to respond to any emergency breakdowns on the traffic network, but delays could be expected on roads throughout south east Queensland.  

"However, with so many electricians off the job today there won't be the staff available to cover anything less than emergency maintenance issues, meaning we could see congestion throughout the main roads of South East Queensland as a result of Departmental vindictiveness." 

Comment has been sought from the office of the Acting Main Roads and Road Safety Minister and the Department of Transport and Main Roads.  

Topics:  traffic lights

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