Passengers of the West Coast Express will be served by buses and SkyTrain if there is a CP Rail strike. (THE NEWS files)

Buses would pick up West Coast Express riders if job action

If CP Rail workers strike, TransLink will bus commuters to Skytrain

TransLink is making plans for commuters in case the West Coast Express is stopped by job action on the railway.

Unions representing Canadian Pacific Rail employees have served strike notice for Saturday, and the region’s transit service provider is making contingencies to have buses pick up those who are served by the express train from Mission to Vancouver.

Chris Bryan of TransLink said it wants customers to know the transit authority will replace the West Coast Express service if there is a disruption.

“We’re not going to leave them in the lurch. We will provide transit service,” he said.

“We know how much people in Maple Ridge, Pitt Meadows and beyond to Mission depend on that service.”

The backup plan is to offer 12 to 16 buses that will run on the West Coast Express schedule, picking up passengers at the stations, and taking them to Coquitlam Central Station, where they can board SkyTrain.

Bryan said the buses will mostly run on an express route – not stopping at each WCE station – until they get to Coquitlam Central. So the trip from Mission by bus will take just five minutes longer than by train, he said.

However, the SkyTrain will make its regularly scheduled stops, and that could add up to 20 minutes to the trip downtown.

“SkyTrain is not able to compete with West Coast Express for your quick journey downtown,” he said.

TransLink is still going to offer a Sun Run schedule on April 22, and Bryan said that will also be replaced by buses if there is job action puts the brakes on the WCE. It is scheduled to leave Mission at 7 a.m.

The buses will follow the WCE Sun Run Train schedule, but they will not be as fast as the train, getting runners to the race by 8:40 a.m. for a 9 a.m. start, he said.

Two unions have authorized strikes – the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW), Canadian Signals and Communications System Council No. 11 voted this week to joined the Teamsters Rail Conference of Canada in job action on April 21.

Bryan said there is still time to negotiate, and the two sides are still at the table.

“Serving a strike notice is part of the bargaining process that unions must follow if they want to be able to strike,” said Keith Creel, CP president and CEO, in a press release.

“We remain committed to achieving a win-win solution and urge the two unions to work closely with us and the federal mediators to achieve a positive outcome as soon as possible in the hours leading up to the deadline.”

The IBEW said there is a significant gap between the parties, while the the Teamsters union has accused CP of manufacturing a crisis.

The unions have said if there is no negotiated settlement, their workers will walk out at 12:01 a.m. on Saturday.

Just Posted

Freshet of 2018 evokes memories of the flood of 1948

And while the devastation of 70 years ago informs flood protection now, similar event not predicted

Chilliwack Chiefs prove doubters wrong with RBC Cup triumph

The Chiefs played with a chip on their shoulders, claiming their 1st-ever national junior A title.

Chilliwack Chiefs make history with first RBC Cup win

In front of a huge and noisy crowd, the Chiefs claimed their first-ever national junior A title.

Rising river prompts road closure in Chilliwack

Fraser expected to continue rise on Monday

Chilliwack Chiefs moving on to RBC Cup final after thrilling win over Ottawa

Kaden Pickering scored the winning goal in the 3rd period as Chilliwack won their semi-final 3-2.

VIDEO: After the floods, comes the cleanup as Grand Forks rebuilds

Business owners in downtown wonder how long it will take for things to go back to normal

UPDATE: Woman dies in ocean accident near Tofino hours before daughter’s wedding

“We are so thankful to everyone who helped our mom.”

Olympian sues USA Swimming, saying it failed to protect her

Ariana Kukors Smith alleges her former coach Sean Hutchison began grooming her for sexual abuse at the age of 13

Defence minister thanks troops for B.C. flood relief work

Harjit Sajjan says not only was military response quick, support from locals has been ‘tremendous’

Arrest made in last week’s double shooting in East Van

Carleton Stevens, 37, is charged with attempted murder and remains in custody

Couple survives being buried in mudslide on B.C. highway

The couple, from Saskatchewan, were en route to Nelson when a tree fell in their path

‘So grateful:’ Injured Bronco hockey player glad he’s alive, works on recovery

Ryan Straschnitzki was badly hurt in the accident: a spinal injury, broken ribs, a broken collar bone, and punctured lung

PHOTOS: Floodwaters rise and fall in Grand Forks

The flood-ravaged Kootenay-Boundary region begins to heal

Martin Mars waterbombers’ firefighting days are done

Wayne Coulson said his company still hopes to find a new home for the vintage aircraft

Most Read