SEPTA Asks Union for Good-Faith Negotiations

Philadelphia bus, trolley and subway lines remain stopped

SEPTA released a Survival Guide for customers during the strike. CLICK HERE to read it.

Philadelphia's transit agency called on the union representing about 4,700 striking workers Wednesday night to engage in good-faith negotiations to bring an end to the walkout.

NBC10’s Randy Gyllenhaal tells us how the union and SEPTA are coming along with a deal to stop the strike.

The Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority said in a statement that it's clear the strike is "causing severe hardship" for residents.

Negotiations between SEPTA and the Transport Workers Union continued on Day 2 of the SEPTA strike that caused delays on crowded commuter rails since bus, trolley and subway services were suspended.

"On several occasions this week, SEPTA negotiators believed progress toward a deal had been made," said SEPTA Board Chairman Pasquale T. Deon Sr. "However, at each of those seemingly positive turns, TWU Local 234 has brought a halt to negotiations."

SEPTA and its union are back at the bargaining table as the strike continues but there’s still no deal. Pennsylvania congressman Bob Brady joined the negotiations to try and help both sides reach an agreement. NBC10’s Brandon Hudson has the details.

Deon also asked the union after talks ended for the night to assure residents that they will suspend the strike on Election day if no agreement is reached.

The union called SEPTA's statement "outrageous" and was expected to issue an official response later Wednesday night.

The strike began at 12:01 a.m. Tuesday, shutting down buses, trolleys and subways that provide about 900,000 rides a day. A current cap on union pension benefits and the amount of time off provided to operators between shifts were among the issues on the table.

Frustrated motorists fought traffic gridlock at morning and evening rush hours Wednesday during the second day of the strike.

Highways around the region experienced major backups as thousands of people who normally take city transit used their cars instead.

New York businessman Cesar Rivera, 34, said late Wednesday it was "useless" to try to drive out of the city during the evening rush.

NBC10 followed the chaos of the SEPTA strike on Tuesday. NBC10’s Brandon Hudson has the latest developments from 30th Street Station.

"I will be thinking about crashing at a friend's place if it stays like this," Rivera said. "Everytime I cross the street tonight it's been on a green (light) because the traffic has been so bad and hardly moving."

Regional rail lines experienced delays for a second night as a result of increased demand caused by the idling of city buses, trolleys and subways.

The city's bike-share program was doing a booming business.

Gabby Richards, 23, said she was relieved Wednesday morning to get the last bike available at the stand near her home.

"There's a powerful message coming with this strike about how important public transportation is to the city of Philadelphia and to people like me," Richards said. "I've been making my plans each day around Uber surge pricing and traffic. It's clear that something needs to happen to get people moving smoothly again."

SEPTA on Strike

Uber said it had 41 percent more unique riders during rush hours Tuesday compared with the same day the previous week.

This is the ninth strike since 1975 by the city transit union. The last one, in 2009, lasted six days.

Bus operators walking the picket lines said they were striking to protect their benefits, lift a limit on pension benefits and secure better working conditions.

"We're on the front lines every day, battling out here with these people getting spit on, punched at, getting called all kinds of names while they (management) sit up in their cushy office doing nothing," bus operator Andre Rhoads said.

The continuing SEPTA strike is halting service on buses, subway lines and trolleys. SEPTA made an offer to the union on Tuesday but that offer was rejected.

Bus operator Anthony Lindsay said the strikers understand the inconvenience they are causing. "But we also have cousins and mothers and fathers and uncles and nieces and nephews and neighbors who are also suffering with us. So, it shouldn't last long, but it is what it is," he said.

The strike is also affecting the Philadelphia school district. SEPTA provides rides for nearly 60,000 public, private and charter school students.


  • Regional Rail
  • Norristown High Speed Line
  • Suburban Bus, Trolley Routes 101 & 102
  • LUCY (Loop through University City), Route 310 (Horsham Breeze), Routes 204, 205 and Cornwells Heights Parking Shuttle
  • CCT Connect: Regular Service will operate for registered ADA and Shared Ride customers. There may be some delays due to increased demand and local street traffic.


  • City Bus Routes (Including Route 78, Cornwells Heights to Center City Express)
  • Market Frankford Line
  • Broad Street & Broad Ridge Spur Lines
  • Trolley Routes 10, 11, 13, 15, 34, and 36

CLICK HERE to read SEPTA's complete survival guide


Temple University student Victor Lourng created a map of bus routes that will run and provide services for students, hotel guests and some workers during the strike.


The University of Pennsylvania partnered with Drexel University, the University of Pennsylvania Health System and Children's Hospital of Philadelphia to provide complimentary transit services to all employees of these institutions and organizations at Penn. CLICK HERE for more information.


Temple University released contingency plans to help members of the university community during the strike. CLICK HERE to learn more.


Uber announced they would expand its uberPOOL coverage throughout the greater Philadelphia area during the strike. CLICK HERE to learn more. 


Lyft announced prices will remain low for passengers during the strike. CLICK HERE to learn more.


Zipcar announced they would discount its cars in Philadelphia with $5 hourly reservations available on more than 100 zipcars near SEPTA stops for those who are without transportation. CLICK HERE to learn more.


Indego increased the amount of bikes available at some key pickup and drop-off stations to deal with more bikers. CLICK HERE to learn more.


The Philadelphia Parking Authority discounted parking prices at some garages and relaxed residential and meter parking rules to deal with more drivers in Philadelphia. CLICK HERE to learn more.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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