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Commuters faced rush hour chaos on the Tube as union bosses warned a shortage of trains could spark a “crisis” on some lines.
It was the second consecutive day of problems on the Piccadilly line sparked by a shortage of available trains. The Victoria line was also hit by delays due to a track fault at Green Park.
The delays sparked fears services would be disrupted for weeks after a shortage caused ongoing chaos at the end of last year when TfL took half of the line’s 79 trains out of service to fix worn down wheels.
One person wrote on Twitter: “No lessons learned from last year? Someone needs to be sacked! This is unlikely though?”
Another added: “Is it going to be like this every day like last November?”
Others jokingly speculated where the carriages had got to.
Alex Panayi wrote on Twitter: “What does that actually mean? Victoria line’s stolen them? They didn’t come in after a night out? Black hole on the track? Need transparency.”
Another user blamed “a raid by the Northern Line”.
The problem coincides with an overtime ban by members of the RMT union over the employment of temporary staff to repair wheels on the Piccadilly line.
The union called for TfL to employ full-time staff to fix trains over offering casual contracts but suspended the action later on Thursday after coming to an agreement with the transport network.
General secretary Mick Cash warned commuters could face weeks of delays as the Piccadilly line was “in crisis”. He vowed to fight for “as long as it takes” to resolve the issue – casting uncertainty over how long commuters will face delays.
Passengers shared videos of huge queues at Brixton, Finsbury Park and Seven Sisters as TfL urged commuters to use local bus services and train services between Victoria and Brixton.
Tony Matthews, Piccadilly line General Manager, said: “I apologise to customers for the delays this morning. This is due to a temporary shortage of trains caused by industrial action by some of our staff at one of our Piccadilly line depots. We have reached an agreement with the RMT union and we expect the industrial action to be withdrawn.”
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