Bus strike in Rio de Janeiro paralyzed BRT system

Rio’s highways of January went on strike at dawn and early in the morning of today (29). According to the union of the category, the conventional system was partially affected and the BRT, which has articulated buses with exclusive lanes, came to be completely paralyzed.

According to the president of the Road Workers Union, Sebastião José, the entity has not yet been notified by the justice of the injunction that prevents the strike, but decided to suspend the movement in view of the application of a fine of R$ 200 thousand daily to the union in case of non-compliance with the decision.

“Companies are using the injunction as a way of imposing the return of professionals, but the union has not yet been officially notified of the injunction. As soon as this occurs, we will convene a meeting to communicate the category of the court decision. This was already expected by the companies, which treat the category like cattle and without any sensitivity to the needs of the category”

He explains that the category has frozen salaries for three years and negotiations with companies do not advance. The road workers claim the salary recomposition for the accumulated inflation since 2019.

“Since September, we have been trying to negotiate the recomposition of the wage floor for the category and the basic food basket, without any proposal sent by employers. So the workers can’t stand working in precarious situations any longer and they haven’t had a salary readjustment for three years. The strike is decreed and we ask for the understanding of the population for this workers’ struggle. This population has also been harmed in recent times with the scrapping and bankruptcy of public transport”.

The meeting scheduled for 2 pm, in Rocha Miranda, was suspended, in view of the injunction.

“Sintrucad-RIO hopes to reverse this decision as quickly as the employers obtained the injunction and will again require the Court to apply the law and its precedents, granting basic claims to road workers, while it urges the category to remain mobilized and attentive to information from the union”, says the statement from the entity.

city ​​Hall

According to Mobi-Rio, a public company that operates the BRT, even with the preliminary decision suspending the road workers’ strike, the drivers did not report to work at the beginning of the shift.

The city hall set up a contingency plan to reduce the disruption caused by the strike and reported that conventional bus services have been operating partially since dawn and are being regularized throughout the morning of today.

The operation of the modals was reinforced, with the extension of the peak hours of the light rail vehicle (VLT), which circulates in the center of the city, guaranteeing a 7-minute break on the three lines.

The subway had extra supply during off-peak hours and Supervia reserve trains were placed on Ramal Santa Cruz and Gramacho, which will be activated if passenger demand increases.

The larger ferries are being used in the connection Cocotá (Ilha do Governador) – Praça XV (Downtown). Line schedules have resumed according to pre-pandemic intervals.

According to the city hall, the vans and the so-called “cabritinhos”, which circulate in communities, are authorized to divert the itinerary to serve train, subway and BRT stations.

The Rio City Hall Operations Center (COR) reported that the municipality entered the Mobilization Stage at 0:00 am due to the announcement of a strike by road workers.


In a statement, Rio Ônibus, a union that brings together the companies, repudiated the strike movement and highlighted the court injunction granted at the end of the night of yesterday.

“The court decision stipulates a daily fine of R$ 200 thousand to the Road Workers Union in case of non-compliance with the decision, signed by the judge Edith Maria Correa Tourinho, president of the Regional Labor Court of the First Region”, highlighted the entity.

Rio Bus spokesman Paulo Valente said that the strike will not solve the category’s problems, in addition to aggravating the current mobility crisis in the city.

“Rio Ônibus asks that bus drivers to return to work immediately to serve the population of Rio. We know about the problems that the category is going through, we are in talks with the city hall in the search for solutions to solve the problems of companies, bus companies, the city hall itself and, mainly, the population of Rio of Januarywhich deserves better transport”.

According to the employers’ union, even in the midst of financial difficulties, with the freezing of tariffs and the increase in diesel, companies have prioritized the payment of road workers and the maintenance of their jobs.

“The salary readjustment depends on external actions, since three of the four consortia are in judicial recovery”, claims Rio Ônibus.

Translated to english by RJ983

From Brazil, by EBC News

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