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Planned strike at Aurizon may impact key coal haulage tracks in Queensland

Workers at Aurizon Holdings Ltd. are planning a labor action after pay negotiations between the two sides collapsed, Reuters reported Dec. 12, citing the Rail, Tram and Bus Union, which represents the company's train crews and maintenance workers.

Mining giants including BHP Group Ltd., Glencore PLC, Anglo American PLC and Peabody Energy Corp. bring coal to port using Aurizon's four major railways in Queensland, Australia.

"Members ... will start walking off the job at midday tomorrow in 11 days of action," the union said, outlining four days of work stoppages and seven days of overtime bans.

"Aurizon has been bargaining in good faith [and] believes solid and constructive progress was being made," the rail freight company responded, urging the unions to withdraw the industrial action.

If the strike proceeds, coal trains will not run on Aurizon's Blackwater and Moura networks for 24 hours from noon on Dec. 14, while coal haulage on the Goonyella and Newlands lines will stop for 24 hours from noon on Dec. 15 and on its corridor into Brisbane from noon on Dec. 17.

The lines connect the Bowen Basin with ports on Australia's east coast.

A BHP spokesperson told the newswire the strikes will not have any material impact, while Glencore, Anglo and Peabody had no immediate comment.