Bus passengers are being urged to plan ahead on Friday and Monday when bus drivers will strike over pay arrangements.
Although bus services and fares in the capital are regulated by Transport for London, individual routes are operated by outside companies who are responsible for employing their own drivers and staff.
Drivers union Unite is calling for a London-wide pay scale to replace the current system of separate pay deals with each operator.
Speaking earlier this month, Unite regional officer Wayne King said: “Bus passengers pay one fare, so why don’t bus drivers get paid the same rate for doing the same job?”
The union and some London politicians want TfL and Mayor Boris Johnson to intervene in the row but both insist the responsibility for resolving the dispute rests with the Unite and the operators.
TfL has questioned the legality of a collective pay deal and claims the current system of varying pay rates allow operators to reward experience and reflect the different skills drivers have.
The organisation says the strikes will affect services from 4am on Friday 13th February as well as night bus services operating on the Friday night into Saturday morning and services on Monday 16th February.
During last week’s strike only around of half of bus services operated, causing delays and disruption to thousands of Londoners.
Mike Weston, TfL’s Director of Buses, today said: “Bus driver rates of pay have been negotiated and agreed between Unite and the bus companies individually under a long-standing and jointly agreed process.
“This process has been in place for more than 20 years and has regularly resulted in pay rises above the rate of inflation.”
Routes operated by the following companies are likely to be affected by the strike:
• Abellio (Abellio London and Abellio West London);
• Arriva (Arriva North and Arriva South);
• CT Plus (Hackney Community Transport);
• Go Ahead (Blue Triangle, Docklands, London General, London Central, Metrobus);
• London Sovereign;
• London United;
• Metroline (Metroline and Metroline West);
• Stagecoach (East London Bus & Coach Company, Selkent);
• Tower Transit.
Passengers are advised to check www.tfl.gov.uk/buses for up-to-date information on route availability or to use other transport option