Trains were running late and others were canceled in Romania Thursday after up to 1,000 railway workers began a spontaneous strike at a number of cities around the country to protest what they said were plans to lay off staff.
Employees of the CFR state railways at depots in the cities of Brasov, Ploiesti, Arad and Satu Mare began a walkout over plans to lay off workers from the repairs branch of the company. Strike action began Tuesday in Brasov, the main depot for repairs.
Between 15 and 19 trains were canceled Thursday morning, reports said. CFR did not announce how many trains weren’t running due to the walkout.
Passengers waited on platforms as some trains weren’t running from the capital to the central city of Brasov and the eastern town of Buizau.
Union leader Ionel Savin said that employees were angry that the company “is trying to bankrupt the company” by moving workers from the repairs branch, SCRL, to the main company.
Romanian railway infrastructure ranks 26th out of 28 in the European Union, virtually last, because the last two countries, Malta and Cyprus, don’t have a rail service.
The average speed of Romanian trains is just 50 kilometers an hour, less than half the EU average.