Traffic jams and strikes expected in the Netherlands
With King’s Day coming up in the Netherlands, The Royal Dutch Touring Club (ANWB) warns of traffic jams during the evening rush hour on Thursday, April 26. On April 30 and May 1, there may also be a public transport strike throughout the whole of the Netherlands.
Busy roads in the Netherlands
The ANWB suspects that the busyness on the roads may be due to the long weekend that King’s Day provides and that some may already be going away to celebrate the May holiday. This year, the May holiday falls on Friday, April 27 until Sunday, May 6.
Busy traffic situations are anticipated on route to the coast and Den Helder, where one can take a ferry to the Dutch island Texel. In contrast, on King’s Day itself, hardly any traffic is expected, except for in popular cities, such as Groningen, which will be visited by the Dutch Royal Family.
Dutch transport strikes
The May holiday will not only be busy due to the number of travellers jetting off on holiday, but also due to a potential strike by members of the Dutch labour unions CNV and FNV, which could mean that regional buses and trains stop running on April 30 and May 1.
The strike is a result of failed negotiations between the labour unions and employers regarding work pressure, salary and pension, amongst other things. Currently, the work pressure for bus drivers is so high that they don’t have the chance to stop for a toilet break. A strike was held for the same reasons on January 4, 2018.
In an attempt to stop the strike before it goes ahead, the Dutch labour union representing the employers, VWOV, is going to court in the hopes of being granted an interim injunction. The date for these proceedings is not yet known.
Should the strike go ahead, the following public transport service companies will be affected: Connexxion, EBS, Keolis, Qbuzz and Arriva. It is not only regional buses that will be affected, but also city buses in Dutch cities such as Groningen, Utrecht and Arnhem.
The only public transport companies which will be unaffected by the strike are NS, RET in Rotterdam, GVB in Amsterdam and HTM in The Hague; these companies have their own collective labour agreements.
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