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    UK Transport Union to Stage Strike Against Driver-Only Trains on July 10

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    The members of the UK National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers (RMT) will stage a 24-hour-long strike on July 10 against the implementation of driver-only trains on the Southern Rail, the union said in a statement Thursday.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) Driver-Only Operation (DOO) implies that only the one train driver has the sole responsibility for opening and closing the doors and dispatching the train from a station. The system excludes the role of a guard aboard the train, who is responsible for passenger health and safety, including during accidents.

    "RAIL UNION RMT confirmed today that guards and drivers on Southern Rail will strike again for 24 hours in the on-going disputes over the safety impact of the extension of Driver Only Operation and the removal of guards from services. Members will strike for 24 hours between 0001 hours and 2359 hours on Monday 10th July 2017 [23:00 GMT on July 9 to 21:59 GMT on July 10]," the statement said.

    RMT's General Secretary Mick Cash said that the union's members, working for Southern Rail, which links London with the Channel ports, South West England, South coast resorts and Kent, had been fighting for the safety on such trains for over a year.

    "We have seen absolute chaos at Victoria and East Croydon this week in the hot weather which has reinforced the need for safety critical staff on our trains and platforms. The Government cannot spin their way out of this chaotic situation which is wholly of their making," Cash said in a statement, urging the company running the Southern Rail and the contract holders in the UK government to meet their responsibilities and hold the needed talks to address the DOO issue.

    DOO is currently used on about 30 percent of the UK mainline rail network and London Underground.

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