The ongoing 30 hour railroad strike that is executed by the German train driver's union GDL is slicing the capacity of the passenger travel effectively to half.
The operator Deutsche Bahn prevented a collapse by implementing emergency schedules beforehand, allowing about half of the normal trains to operate on schedule. The union is successfully hampering metropolitan trains in the major German cities of Berlin, Munich, Hamburg and the Rhineland. Eastern states are experiencing the heaviest disruptions of regional trains.
The wage dispute that is lasting for months already, is still stuck as the Deutsche Bahn refuses to fulfill the crucial demands of the union, and the GDL unwilling to compromise.
The union wants a pay raise of up to 31 percent as well as a separate deal, setting working conditions and wage exclusively for the GDL. The union says, that train drivers in Germany are underpaid compared to the drivers in other countries.
The company and union executives continue to accuse each other of blocking the talks. Deutsche Bahn's human resources executive Suckale called for GDL boss Manfred Schell to leave the health resort where he stays since one week, and return to the talks. Vice versa, Schell asked Suckale to step back from her job.
Meanwhile, the German institute for economic research published its weekly report, where it compares the wages of Deutsche Bahn train drivers with the wages paid in similar sectors, and by other railway companies, concluding that the wages are slightly above average, and higher than at example truck drivers payment. An international comparison didn't yield clear results.