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

‘Why not Abbotsford’: Mayor working to see pro hockey return to city

Henry Braun says he has tried continuously to bring a team back to the Abbotsford Centre

Man airlifted to hospital following mushroom farm stabbing

Abbotsford Police speaking with two men from the scene

Abbotsford man faces charges in Delta hit and run

Five men were injured in the June 2017 incident in Ladner

Motorcyclist slides under dump truck

Bike operator lucky to survive collision at Aldergrove intersection

Three new exhibits to open at The Reach Gallery Museum Abbotsford

Opening reception with the artists on Thursday, May 24

ACS Knights, MEI Eagles win big at FV Track Championships

Abbotsford athletes excel at last week’s event, look ahead to provincials later this month

Study recommends jurors receive more financial and psychological support

Federal justice committee calls for 11 policy changes to mitigate juror stress

Surrey RCMP issue warning after third sexual assault since Sunday

It is the third sexual assault reported this week in Surrey

Research needed on impact of microplastics on B.C. shellfish industry: study

SFU’s department of biological sciences recommends deeper look into shellfish ingesting microbeads

B.C. dad pens letter urging overhaul of youth health laws after son’s fatal overdose

The Infants Act currently states children under 19 years old may consent to medical treatment on own

Singh sides with B.C. in hornet’s nest of pipeline politics for the NDP

Singh had called for a more thorough environmental review process on the proposal

VIDEO: Campers leave big mess at rural Vancouver Island campsite

Vehicle parts, garbage, a mattress, lawn chairs, beer cans, and even fecal matter left in the area

VIDEO: B.C. woman gets up-close view of Royal wedding

Kelly Samra won a trip back to her home country to see Prince Harry and Meghan Markle say ‘I do’

30 C in B.C., 30 cm of snow expected for eastern Canada

It might be hot in B.C., but the rest of Canada still dealing with cold

Most Read