DASH bus drivers in Alexandria, Virginia, say they may go on strike this summer during a major Metro shutdown that will close all stations south of Reagan National Airport for weeks.
"We're asking just for what we deserve, and if we don’t get it, a strike will be coming,” said a DASH bus driver who did not want to be identified.
He said bus operators aren’t earning enough in pay and benefits and the Metro shutdown may be the right time to make a point.
"I’m broke. I don’t mind striking, you know what I’m saying. It’s not going to make my situation worse. I’m already in the bottom, you know,” he said.
Every station south of Reagan National Airport on the Blue and Yellow lines will be closed for the summer so that Metro can repair platforms.
Transportation officials say the shutdown is necessary to rebuild the platforms that are cracking and crumbling.
Alexandria officials are making plans for more buses just in case a DASH strike happens, but said negotiations are ongoing.
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"I think everything that we have heard from DASH is that they are working diligently and expediently with the operators to make sure they get to a solution,” said Yon Lambert, the director of the Alexandria Transportation and Environmental Services.
Metro says it will have enhanced shuttle bus service between the stations.
Alexandria officials also say more HOV restrictions will go in place on streets and water taxi service will expand for the summer.