Rail strike will cut hundreds of trains

TGV train at speed in front of red rocks
Just one in four TGV trains will be running and one in two TERs

60% of TGVs cancelled as unions protest against widescale reforms

Rail workers, Air France staff, hospital staff and teachers are due to walk out on strike on Thursday in protest at planned cuts at SNCF and changes in public sector jobs.

SNCF has said that across the network just 50% of TER trains, 75% of Intercités and 60% of TGVs will not run but there will be vast differences at local level – although a ‘public service’ schedule of local trains will run.

Four Eurostar trains have already been cancelled – two from Paris and two from London.

Rail unions have said they are ready for a series of weekly strikes to disrupt travel and challenge the government’s aim for widescale reforms of the cheminot status.

SNCF expects the strikes to be well-supported and it is not possible to advance-book TGV tickets for strike days in April on the oui.SNCF website. This will affect school holidays in Zone C – Paris, Créteil, Versailles, Toulouse and Montpellier – with strikes called on April 13-14 and April 28-29. See the timetable of strikes on the SNCF website. 

In Paris, RATP unions are also taking action and while the Métro, bus and trams will run almost as normal there will be just three trains in four on RER A and B although this falls to two trains in three during rush hour.

Air France pilots are expected to strike and their union said a quarter of flights would be cancelled, although the airline said this would not be known until later today.

Seven public service unions have called a strike over the pay freeze, the loss of a day’s sick pay and compensation for a rise in social charges.

Leading primary school teaching union SNUipp-FSU are also walking out and many crèches will be closed.

Planned health reforms are being targeted by nurses and health auxiliaries.

Civil aviation union USAC-CGT has said some members will be walking out from air traffic control centres.

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