FUEL SUPPLIES MAY BE HIT AS TESCO TANKER DRIVERS STRIKE

PUBLISHED: 10:13 27 January 2006 | UPDATED: 09:30 06 May 2010

FAILURE to resolve a dispute over oil tanker drivers jobs on the Tesco contract across the South West and South East of England will now result in strike action. Leaders of the Transport and General Workers Union have confirmed that there will be a two

FAILURE to resolve a dispute over oil tanker drivers' jobs on the Tesco contract across the South West and South East of England will now result in strike action.

Leaders of the Transport and General Workers Union have confirmed that there will be a two day strike this Wednesday and Thursday affecting fuel deliveries to Tesco forecourts.

Ron Webb, T&G national secretary for transport, said the dispute had started when Wincanton lost the delivery contract to rival contractors TDG.

TDG had failed to guarantee that the drivers' jobs as well as current pay, terms and conditions would be honoured, but the union said they should be protected under well-established employment regulations (the TUPE regulations). Nobody, including Wincanton, has said when the contract will transfer.

"This dispute should be straightforward to resolve but nobody is making an effort to do so," said Mr. Webb. "That's why the drivers' patience has been sorely tested, and why we have confirmed that this strike action will go ahead. It will affect supplies to Tesco as well as their reputation. We can only assume they have been prepared to let this wholly unsatisfactory situation develop."

The T&G represents the 140 drivers involved in the dispute. Union leaders said the drivers responded angrily in the wake of a failure by TDG to say categorically that they intend to honour the TUPE transfer arrangements in all parts of the country. Speaking at the T&G national road transport committee Mr Webb called on Tesco to intervene.

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