National

Vic bus drivers stop work again over pay

By AAP Newswire

Victorian bus commuters could be left without a ride on Friday afternoon as hundreds of bus drivers again walk off the job to strike for better pay.

Drivers, employed by CDC Victoria, won't get behind the wheel between 2pm and 6pm on Friday on more than 70 routes in Ballarat, Geelong and Melbourne's eastern and western suburbs.

The protest is the second this week after about 600 drivers staged a 24-hour strike on Tuesday calling for a four per cent wage increase after negotiations stalled on their new enterprise bargaining agreement.

Transport Workers Union national vice-president John Berger said bus drivers did not take this action lightly, and wanted a bigger slice of the company's profits for the year.

"We are not getting anywhere. We have not had done this (strike) for 20 years," he told AAP.

Mr Berger said the union and company had not met to discuss the agreement since having a two-hour meeting on Monday which reached "an impasse".

"We are disappointed that despite our application to the Fair Work Commission for mediation, the TWU are proceeding with more industrial action on Friday afternoon,'" CDC Victoria chief executive Nicholas Yap in statement on Thursday.

"We continue to appeal to the TWU to progress discussions instead of impacting commuters.

"We believe that our offer, which includes a range of industry-leading benefits, is fair and this demonstrates our support for our drivers."

Drivers are expected to form picket lines at the bus depots during the strike action.

CDC Victoria previously offered a 2.5 per cent wage increase which bus drivers rejected.

Public Transport Victoria said the impact to commuters will be similar to that during Tuesday's strike action, and urged customers to seek alternative arrangements.

Services outside 2pm and 6pm on Friday are not expected to be impacted by the industrial action.

BUS ROUTES AFFECTED BY DRIVER STRIKE

* Melbourne: 150, 151, 153, 160, 161, 166, 167, 170, 180, 181, 190, 192, 406-412, 414, 415, 417-419, 421, 423-425, 439, 441, 443, 461, 494- 498, 601, 605, 606, 612, 623-626, 630, 900

* Geelong: 1, 10, 11, 12, 20, 22, 23, 24, 25, 43

* All bus routes in Ballarat