NJ Transit suspends train service for night amid 'illegal' union sickout

NJ Transit suspends train service for night amid ‘illegal’ union sickout

New Jersey Transit suspended rail service in and out of New York City on Friday night after members of the locomotive engineers’ union called out sick en masse to protest a lack of holiday pay on Juneteenth.

Nearly 80 New Jersey transit trains were canceled in what officials called an “illegal job action” — sending commuters scrambling for a way to get their destinations from Penn Station as Father’s Day weekend kicked off.

“This is so f-king annoying! I have a flight from Newark in two hours,” a man in Penn Station fumed before running off with two suitcases.

Union members were negotiating a new collective bargaining agreement that includes Friday’s observance of Juneteenth as a holiday in New Jersey, but a deal hasn’t been reached, transit officials said.

“With today’s engineer call-outs at nearly triple the rate of an average weekday, it is clear that this is the result of an illegal job action,” NJ transit said in a statement.

“NJ Transit is disappointed that the union would perpetrate such an act on the more than 100,000 commuters who depend on NJ Transit rail service every day,” the agency said in a statement.

Canceled trips on sign
New Jersey Transit has canceled its service Friday night.
Peter Gerber

“We intend to explore all legal remedies in response to this illegal and irresponsible action.”

The last train out of Manhattan was scheduled to depart at 8:05 pm, according to the agency’s abridged schedule. Some trains were scheduled to continue to run from upstate Rockland and Orange Counties to Hoboken in the later evening hours.

Travelers who arrived later were met by closed gates at the NJ transit entrances, which were guarded by a half-dozen Amtrak police officers.

People wait at Penn Station following canceled trips on New Jersey Transit Friday night.
People wait at Penn Station following canceled trips on New Jersey Transit Friday night.
Peter Gerber

Brooklyn resident Toni Quammie, 30, was planning to take the train to New Brunswick, NJ, with her 9-year-old daughter, who was sobbing over the cancellation.

“It’s frustrating especially without a heads up or anything ahead of time. It’s frustrating. When in doubt, you have to figure it out,” said the mom.

Jason Singer, 46, of Florida, is on vacation and trying to get back to The Garden State.

“I’m going to have to spend the night if I can’t get back to Jersey. F–k New York!” he fumed.

The Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen did not immediately return a request for comment from The Post.

The transit agency said in a tweet They expect engineers to report to work Saturday, allowing for a regular weekend schedule.

New Jersey Transit is the third-largest regional transit system in the country.

Train tickets were being cross-honored on NJ Transit buses, officials said.

Juneteenth was signed into law as a federal holiday last year. The June 19 holiday commemorates the day in 1865 that Union troops began enforcing the Emancipation Proclamation of 1862 in Galveston, Texas.


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