London Tube strikes incoming as thousands of RMT staff vote to walk out over safety fears

Tube strike related video: Watch Londoners throw dance party in the Tube to thank striking driversIBTimes UK

Thousands of London Underground workers are set to go on strike following two separate disputes, the RMT union has announced. Tube workers have voted "overwhelmingly" for strike action to take place after they failed to reach an agreement over station staffing and safety, as well as a "breakdown in industrial relations" over concerns regarding the Piccadilly Line.

The RMT union has said that more than 3,000 RMT station staff members have been balloted for action over the impact on safety following the loss of nearly 900 frontline workers alongside the closure of Tube ticket offices.

The union have said recent incidents at Canning Town and North Greenwich have shone a light on "dangers which are being worsened by the cuts process".

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Drivers on the Piccadilly Line also voted to strike overs a dispute about breaches of policies, procedures and safety.

No dates for the walkout have been set yet. The strike action looks set to cause chaos for hundreds of thousands of passengers who use the London Underground system daily.

Mick Cash, RMT General Secretary, said: "RMT members on the London Underground stations see day in and day out the toxic impact of the job-cuts programme, and they are reporting back that it is horrific.

"With the constant overcrowding on stations and platforms, it is only a matter of time before there is a major tragedy if we don't act decisively. Our dispute is about taking action to haul back the cuts machine and put safety back at the top of the agenda.

"In the separate dispute involving drivers on the Piccadilly Line, safety is again a major factor and is tied in with the ripping up of policies and procedures and ignoring warnings from staff. Our members have been left exposed and vulnerable, and we have no choice but to blow the whistle before lasting damage is done.

"RMT members have now voted overwhelmingly for action in both these disputes, and the results will now be considered by the unions executive. The union remains available for talks," said Cash.

Steve Griffiths, London Underground's Chief Operating Officer, said: "We urge the RMT leadership and members to work with us constructively on the issues they have raised, rather than threaten to disrupt our customers with strikes.

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"An independent review‎ of the closure of ticket offices is being conducted by London TravelWatch to ensure that we continue to deliver high quality customer service, and we have talks planned at ACAS next week to discuss the RMT's concerns on the Piccadilly line."

Commuters and shoppers queue for access to Oxford Circus underground station during a Tube strike in 2014.Reuters

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