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TSSA tells London Underground to halt ticket office closures

11 November 2015

TSSA transport union representatives say huge queues at London's mainline and underground stations are posing a risk to the safety - and sanity - of passengers and staff.

And we are calling on London Underground to immediately halt and reverse the rolling programme of ticket office closures which has directly caused chaos for passengers.

Crowd control barriers are now being brought in to stations to manage people into snaked-lines so they can be lined up to buy tickets from machines.

Tube workers are being diverted into managing queues and report 30 minute plus waiting times to buy a ticket is increasingly common.

Concourse congestion is causing frustrations for all passengers and is increasing health and safety risks.

Euston, Kings Cross St Pancras, Victoria, Liverpool Street and Heathrow are the worst blackspots because these are the gateways for so many tourists into London.

But heavy footfall at Earls Court and Finchley Road among other stations are also causing people bottlenecks on station concourses.

"This is not what a 21st century London should be inflicting on its tube passengers or its visitors," said TSSA leader Manuel Cortes.

"We are all for smart technology if it helps passengers, but we need a bit of smart thinking now to stop the accidents before they happen.

"We warned against closing ticket offices. And in his election manifesto Boris pledged he wouldn't close them. Another promise he didn't keep.

"Tempers are fraying out there. People are being driven mad by the long queues and so many visitors to London are being affected this should be the cause of national embarrassment.

"But the chaos is utterly avoidable and easily reversed by halting the rolling closure of ticket offices and reopening them immediately in the gateway blackspots.

"Whatever they tell you, rail unions are all about passenger safety and service. We'd love to say the same of Boris who seems to put his Tory self-interest over the interests of the well-being of London's travelling public."

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