Mar 22

RTBU celebrates office renovation with member BBQ

RTBU members at Hamilton and Belmont are invited to an open day lunchtime BBQ being held to celebrate the opening of the newly renovated RTBU Office at 22 Gordon Avenue Hamilton on Monday 31 March 2014.

Mar 18

RTBU stands up against North Sydney bus depot sale

The RTBU’s Tram & Bus Division has taken a stand against the Government’s plans to sell off the North Sydney bus depot.

Division Secretary Chris Preston spoke to the Sydney Morning Herald, warning that the plan could mean longer delays for commuters when Sydney’s public transport system breaks down and emergency buses are needed.

Read the full story in the SMH here.

The bus depot at North Sydney is the closest one to the city, so often is the first point of call when emergency buses are needed on the other side of the bridge.

But the state government’s plan to sell off the depot will mean commuters will have to wait longer on those all-too-frequent occasions when Sydney’s public transport system breaks down and emergency buses are needed, says a former depot driver and union official.

”We would be in the city in seven minutes in the case of an emergency,” said Chris.

Mar 11

Sick leave dispute goes to the Commission

RTBU, National Legal Officer, Thomas Costa will represent Sydney and Newcastle Bus Drivers in the NSW Industrial Relations Commission on Friday 14 March, where acting Justice Boland will preside over a compulsory conference which the Union has sought to address a long running dispute over certified sick leave.

The Union will argue that certified sick leave cannot be used to place members on the Absence Management Program (AMP) or to progress members through various stages of the AMP.  Proceedings will start at 10.00am in Court 3.3 at the IRC in Bridge Street, Sydney.

Photo: McFarlandMo


Mar 7

Bridging Sydney: Sydney Alliance Assembly

Our Union, RTBU, is an active member of Sydney Alliance ( With a year to go before the next NSW state election, the Sydney Alliance will launch its campaign to alert the NSW Government and those vying for public office of its demands.

More than 2000 people are expected to attend the launch event from 6.15pm on Wednesday 26 March at Sydney Town Hall. Sydney-siders will assemble, stand up and use their voices to send the clear message, “We want you to consult us about public transport! We want affordable housing! We want pathways to work, regardless of our backgrounds!”

Th launch will be a show of solidarity, showing Alliance members and supporters they are not alone in efforts to improve life in Sydney. It demonstrates to political leaders that people from across Sydney, people with different backgrounds, are united around a common agenda.

The politicians will see thousands of people connect issues with solutions, citizens with decision makers and diverse communities with each other. Together, we act in strength!

Register to be part of this experience: email Maryanne Stuart, or call (02) 9264 2511. RTBU only has 100 places available so be quick to join the delegation! Let our Union voice be heard!

Mar 6

Bus use rises fastest on the fringes

Photo Simon Sees/Flickr Creative Commons

The growing concentration of jobs in central Sydney does not mean that new transport initiatives should be funnelled into the middle of town.

That is the finding of an analysis of one of the major additions to Sydney’s transport network in the past decade – the high-capacity Metrobuses designed to link employment and growth centres along the city.

On Wednesday, Fairfax Media reported the results of a large survey that showed four out of 10 jobs created across greater Sydney in the past five years had been concentrated in the one council area – the City of Sydney.

Transport planners and other experts said the agglomeration of jobs in central Sydney owed much to the proliferation of ”knowledge intensive” industries in the past decade as well as the city’s historical development.

But that does not mean that new transport initiatives should replicate those developed in the past, transport planners and experts said.

In an analysis of the city’s 13 Metrobus routes, presented to a transport conference last year, Chinh Ho and Corinne Mulley of the Institute of Transport and Logistics Studies at Sydney University found that the greatest growth in patronage was on those routes that bypassed central Sydney.

Read more in the Sydney Morning Herald


Mar 5

Members are a vital part of the community

Tram and Bus Divisional President Gary Way visited Willoughby Depot Member Jon Russell at Cottage Point Bushfire station where Jon volunteers countless hours in the role of Brigade Captain

Jon Russell is one of those blokes who you can rely on in an emergency.

He’s driven buses out of the Willoughby depot for almost a decade – an achievement in itself – and dedicates countless hours to the community as a Brigade Captain for the Rural Fire Service.

He’s responsible for a crew of 35, but can have the lives of double or triple that number in his hands when responding to fierce fires.

He’s also a proud member.

Last month, Tram and Bus Divisional President Gary Way visited Jon at Cottage Point Bushfire station, where he thanked Jon for his dedicated volunteer service (pictured below).

Jon told Bus Express he’s been at every local fire since 1979 and travelled all across NSW and Victoria to help save property and lives.

“We head to the sheds, we bring out the tanker and we roll out to put the fire out,” he said.

Jon was on ground fighting fires when Black Saturday in Victoria, the worst in Australia’s history, claimed the lives of 173 people and destroyed 2029 homes.

He feels a sense of camaraderie with the other Rural Fire Service volunteers he meets and leads during the often tough and long bushfire season.

“Thank God for State Transit and other government departments. They’re the people I tend to bump into when they’re out fighting fires these days,” Jon said.

He highly recommends other RTBU Tram and Bus Division members consider volunteering with the Rural Fire Service, with its good training, firm friendships and the chance of being of service to the community.

And people like Jon who’ll have your back

Share your story
We want to hear from other RTBU members who make a difference in their community. Tell us about your service and email your contact details to

Feb 27

Bus Express TV – February 27

Check out the first edition of Bus Express TV for 2014. This week Chris Preston and Gary Way give us an update on the IRC hearing into broken and casual shifts, roster changes and the Inner West tram line. They also look forward to hear directly from members as the depot BBQs fire up again.

Feb 27

Bus driver assists fall victim who sees funny side of premature visit to funeral parlour

Lou Brown can joke about the fact that he got off a bus, fell on the road and ended up in a funeral parlour.

But his gratitude for the bus driver and the woman in the funeral parlour is no joke – he’s extremely grateful for their help.

Mr Brown, 89, who is ­legally blind, caught the bus outside the War Veterans home at Collaroy Plateau on January 4 and got off near Pacific Pde, Dee Why.

“I lost my balance and fell on to Pittwater Rd,” he said.

The bus driver, Alan Corke, knew Mr Brown’s eyesight was poor so he kept a lookout for him.

Mr Corke sensed something was wrong, got out of his bus and found Mr Brown on the road.

With the help of a passer-by, he helped Mr Brown into nearby Ann Wilson Funeral Directors where he was tended by Ann Wilson.

Lou Brown, bus driver Alan Corke and Ann Wilson, from Ann Wilson Funerals. Source: News Limited

Read more in the Manly Daily

Feb 24

It’s BBQ time

Rank and File BBQs

Acknowledging our Loyal Membership
As we start a year that will be dominated by Award negotiations and fighting for our rights, the RTBU Tram and Bus Division is committed to continuing to listen to members concerns and ideas, and our BBQ gatherings provide the perfect opportunity.
Time permitting, the Union intends to repeat the efforts of recent years and conduct these BBQ’s during the course of the year.
The picture below is from the Port Botany RTBU BBQ at the end of last year. Pictured is RTBU Port Botany Delegate Mick De Meo andRTBU Assistant Branch Secretary David Woollams.

Feb 14

Notice to Members

Part-time broken and expanded use of casuals dispute

STA has lodged an appeal to the Full Bench of the Industrial Relations Commission (IRC) disputing decisions handed down by Justice Staff in favour of the RTBU on 6th December 2014.

The appeal will be heard on Wednesday 30th April 2014 at 10am in the IRC building at 47 Bridge Street Sydney.

Members are encouraged to attend (in their own time).

It is unfortunate and uncommon that State Transit are refusing to accept then original umpire’s decision but members should be assured the union and our solicitors will fight this appeal as hard as ever.

Download the full Notice to Members here