The Orange County (Calif.) Transportation Authority (OCTA) has reduced its fixed-route bus service after the coach operators’ union went on strike Saturday, July 7, impacting local commuters.
Coach operators from Teamsters Union 952 are striking for increases in wages and benefits, according to the OCTA Website.
As of Wednesday night, negotiations had reached a stalemate but were scheduled to continue at 11 a.m. on Thursday. According to a report in the Los Angeles Times, union members and OCTA disagree over whether the bulk of the wage increases under the proposed three-year contract should go just to senior drivers or be distributed equally among all drivers.
Services not affected by the strike include paratransit, express bus and Metrolink bus and train services, officials report.
The last strike at OCTA was in 1986 and lasted 12 days.
Currently OCTA is operating a single route, running approximately every 30 minutes from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekdays only and will add two additional routes starting Monday, July 16. All bus routes in service are free to passengers during the strike.
OCTA representatives who have a license to drive a 40-foot bus will be operating the route while the coach operators are on strike.