German railway strike hits services in Switzerland
InterCity Express (ICE) and other German trains in Switzerland have been suspended until Wednesday due to the ongoing industrial action against Deutsche Bahn (DB).
Trains from Zurich to Hamburg, Berlin and Munich disrupted
The disruption began on Monday after passenger railway workers from the Union of German Locomotive Drivers (GDL) joined freight workers in a drivers strike, aimed at securing an increase to workers’ salaries. The action is due to last until Wednesday and has caused mass disruption to rail services in Germany and surrounding nations.
In Switzerland, the majority of ICE services to Swiss destinations are suspended. Routes such as Zurich to Hamburg and Zurich to Berlin have been cancelled until the end of the strike, with a dramatically reduced service expected for routes out of Basel and Geneva. Passengers on services that cross into Germany, such as those near Schaffhausen, should also prepare for delays.
Furthermore, services through Switzerland and the Gotthard to Italy will also be reduced in number. It is hoped that existing Swiss trains will compensate for the loss in traffic. Italian rail services to Switzerland through the Gotthard are currently unaffected by the industrial action.
Deutsche Bahn asks Swiss passengers to postpone trips to Germany
Deutsche Bahn has advised all travellers to delay or postpone their trips until after the strike ends at 2 am on Wednesday. Although the company expects around 40 percent of local S-Bahn services to be running, InterCity and InterCity Express trains, especially those to destinations outside of Germany, will be most impacted.
The strike by passenger railway workers started at 2 am on Monday, after the GDL rejected an offer by Deutsche Bahn of a salary increase of 3,2 percent, saying that the rise was a “sham offer." They claim that the increase would be given too late and spread over a long period of time. They demand a rise of 3,2 percent in two stages, alongside a “corona bonus” of 600 euros and better working conditions.