"Safety of train travellers in danger"
The newspaper says that NS customers and personnel could be in danger because specially trained anti-aggression teams have not been set up in time.7 February 2008
AMSTERDAM – Safety on trains is in danger, the AD reports on Thursday. The newspaper says that NS customers and personnel could be in danger because specially trained anti-aggression teams have not been set up in time.
The NS only has half of the 600 conductors it needs, according to the rail worker unions CNV, VVMC and FNV.
"It is inconceivable that the Dutch Railways has had two years to prepare for this and that they haven't got everything in order," says Wim Eilert of union VVMC.
He says there is a shortage of personnel and NS employees are therefore not able to attend the necessary courses. "More has to be done to recruit personnel."
New regulations have been in place for train conductors since 1 January: only specially trained NS employees are authorised to use suitable force to arrest aggressive passengers.
Jerry Piqué, director of CNV Spoor, told the AD: "I'm concerned that some of the 300 people available will drop out, because there is a lot of confusion about the legal situation of the team members."
GroenLinks wants explanation from the government on the possible shortage of conductors that are authorised to use force. GroenLinks MP Wijnand Duyvendak says a solution must be found quickly, if necessary by deploying police.
[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2008]
Subject: Dutch news