A small group of Chicago Skyway maintenance workers plans to go on strike starting Tuesday.
There’s only 11 of them, but the workers play a vital role in keeping the Skyway Toll Bridge running smooth all hours of the day.
A union spokesman said the workers clean up after car accidents and are often the first responders on the scene.
They’ve been without a contract since last November.
International Union of Operating Engineers Local 150 spokesman Ed Maher says their employer, Skyway Concessions, hasn’t been negotiating in good faith.
“They’re out there in very unsafe conditions. You’ll hear reports of people getting hurt, people getting killed in this kind of line of work and to be strung along for nine months is completely unacceptable,” Maher told WBEZ on Monday. “They work around the clock. No matter what time or what day of the week in trying to keep the roads safe for driving,”
Maher the union put the company on notice last week. The decision to go on strike came after a meeting on Monday.
The Skyway is nearly 8 miles long and connects the Dan Ryan with the Indiana Toll Road.
In 2005, the City of Chicago leased the Skyway to an international consortium for $1.8 billion.
Last year, it was purchased by a consortium of three employee pension funds based in Canada.
A spokesperson for Skyway Concessions could not be reached for comment.
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