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Dec 10

You don’t have to drive when bus air conditioning is faulty

Union Delegates are getting complaints from members claiming that they feel intimidated by Radio Room Officials insisting that they continue to operate buses when the air conditioning has failed. THIS IS UNACCEPTABLE.

Members should note:

  • No Supervisor, including Radio Room can force you to drive a bus in service where the air conditioning has failed.
  • You should be polite but firm and insist on a changeover
  • Unlike the old buses, our passengers cannot open windows on new buses
  • opening roof hatches is entirely inadequate and unenforceable.
  • You cannot be disciplined for insisting on a changeover when bus air conditioning has failed. The interests of the health and wellbeing of you and your passengers are paramount

Please note the following extract from a STA Safety Committee Report:-

“Air Conditioning Function – The bus is not to operate c/o to be sent out if air conditioning is not working STA/Radio Room advised bus not to be used if malfunctioning, directive sent to STA from OH&S Angela Bateman”.

Workmates must stand together on this issue and say NO or the intimidation will continue.

Oct 2

Bus Express TV – Sept 30

In this edition of Bus Express, we hear from Gary Way and David Woollams about the concluded bus Enterprise Agreement, the union’s recent wins on travel time payments, sick leave, and the part-time/broken dispute.

Sep 5

Bus Express TV – Sept 5


In this edition of Bus Express, Chris Preston and David Woollams give an update on the proposed new Enterprise Agreement. They also explain that union representatives will be giving a briefing in all depots in the coming weeks to discuss this further, and confirm that they plan to go to a ballot in September 26 at each location.


Aug 11

Meet your local delegate: Ashish Sarker

AshProfile – Ashish Sarker, RTBU delegate for Tempe depot

1. Why did you become involved in the union?
I enjoy communicating with other people and teams to solve problems. The union is constantly challenged to maintain and improve our working conditions. Via communication and unity we are stronger, hence my favouritye slogan is “Let’s work together to make it better!”.

2. What are your hobbies and interests?
In my spare time I like to try new foods (extra chilli please!) with friends and watch and partcipate in some sports.

3. Where do you live and why do you like it?
I live in the Hills District of Sydney it is close to restaurants and parks.

4. Who would you like to have dinner with (dead or alive) and why?
Candlelight dinner with my lovelly wife. I would go to dinner with my wife
daughter before anyone else dead or alive.


Jul 17

Blitz on buses and drivers continues

Screen Shot 2014-07-17 at 3.57.33 PM

Police and Inspectors from Roads and Maritime have ramped up their blitz on buses and bus drivers expanding their net to the STA fleet after earlier swoops on private bus services. On Friday 11th July, 2014 inspectors and Police descended on the Port Botany and Hamilton depots, finding a considerable number of what they described as minor defects.

The STA fleet seemed to be in much better condition than the privates that were hit, thus delivering another blow to the pathetic argument for privatisation. Obviously RTBU members have been booking up faults, and although some annoying issues take too long to be addressed (over 30 faults were found), our vigilance has paid off.

Two swab drug tests, which initially showed positive, were later deemed negative, with confirmation to come from final urine tests. Well done to all RTBU members involved. In particular David Sousa – Relief Delegate Port Botany Depot and Glen Saunders – Relief Delegate Hamilton, who spent the day protecting members interests.

Jun 5

Focus on Driver Security

Following a spate of recent incidents where NSW transport workers have been bashed, threatened and abused, the union has launched a campaign calling on the NSW Government to guarantee the safety of the workforce.

Bus drivers face being spat on, abused and worse every day and something must be done to protect them.

It is the responsibility of the NSW Government to provide a safe working environment.

The RTBU has written to the Minister demanding answers but we also need members’ help.

We need as much information as we can get from our members to document the effects of poor government security provisions. We need to keep a centralised log of attacks on workers so the Union has the evidence to back our ongoing call for change.

You can help us by sharing your story.

Your name and other personal information will not be passed on to management or the Government, but the details of the incident will.

If you have experienced any threats to your personal security, please take five minutes to provide the details of the incident here.

Help us hold the Government to account and make them uphold their duty of care to their workers.

Jun 5

RTBU Win on Red Roads dispute

Veteran Burwood Depot Delegate Mark Delohery led the charge for the RTBU in a Safety Dispute over Buses Skidding in Red Bus Lanes during  wet weather.

The Union has had a convincing win in this dispute with Roads & Maritime Services addressing the problem as a priority.

The RTBU has also gained assurances in writing that any skidding incident/accidents which occur in wet conditions before the problem is fixed will not be recorded on the drivers accident card and will not trigger any action under the accident/incident policy.

RTBU official Gary Way has described the unions victory as “a sensible outcome for our members “.

Drivers are reminded to use extreme caution while driving in problem areas until Roads and Maritime have completed the necessary changes to the surface and to report the slightest problem to management and the local union rep in case further disputation is required.

Jun 2

Bus Express TV – May 26

In this edition of Bus Express, Chris Preston and Gary Way give an update on recent unfair dismissals and disputes in the Northern region, an explanation of the recent Court of Appeal decision on superannuation, discuss recent depot executive meetings regarding new award preparations as well as a run down on what the federal budget means for public transport workers.

Jun 2

Delegate Profile: Matthew Compton, Mona Vale Depot

Get to know your local delegate! This week we interviewed Matt Compton, delegate at Mona Vale Depot.

1. Why did you become involved in the union? 

I think we are all very lucky to have a union, after spending most of my working life in retail our working conditions are second to none. Why did I get involved? To stop the continuous attack of our conditions by the less informed.

2. What are your hobbies and interests?

Well while I am at work my only interest is making sure that Union members survive the vicious onslaught that managers put their staff through on a day-to-day basis. I know this is not a hobby but I do love spending time with my wife and kids.

3. Where do you live and why do you like it?

Mount Colah is where I live. I moved here from the Northern Beaches because it is cheaper to buy a house here but after spending time in the area I have come to enjoy the lifestyle and it is close to everything.

4. Who would you like to have dinner with (dead or alive) and why?

The Beatles. Well you did ask me dead or alive and I’m sure I don’t have to tell you why I’d like to meet them.

May 27

Win for the RTBU on bus repairs

Bus Division members at Ryde depot have had a win in their efforts to get management to take action over malfunctioning 0500 series buses.

RTBU Bus and Tram Division President Gary Way said despite bus drivers reporting serious faults with the 0500 series of buses for years, nothing had been done to address the safety of the 1978 model used on public bus routes around Sydney.

The most common problem reported with the 0500 was a sudden loss of acceleration experienced particularly when the buses were on an uphill slope, or while turning. The buses also frequently shuddered violently as they struggled to get up to speed, compromising passenger safety and leading to public complaints.

Eighty-five of the 300 buses stationed at the Ryde bus depot are from the 0500 series and this series is used on more than 50 bus routes across the city.

Continued inaction by the STA to adequately fix the malfunctioning 0500 series led Ryde Depot drivers and RTBU representatives to warn management that if the buses weren’t comprehensively overhauled, the union would launch a public campaign on the issue.

Gary Way Ryde depot

Gary Way at Ryde Depot to discuss the 0500 series

This seems to have been the catalyst for management to finally step up and properly repair the malfunctioning buses.  Many got new turbo chargers and other substantial new part as a result.

Mr Way said that the fix was a win for drivers and commuters.

“These malfunctions were a safety issue for drivers and passengers alike. Our members stood firm on the issue and had a good win, which goes to show the effectiveness of collective action,” Mr Way said.