Further rail strikes across Scotland will strip millions of pounds from the economy, experts predict, as council officials demand that SNP ministers intervene on a pay dispute to ensure schools can reopen in August.
About 40,000 rail workers across the United Kingdom plan to walk out on June 21, 23 and 25 in a row over pay and pensions.
Alongside that 25,000 public sector staff in Scotland, working in school support areas as well as cleansing and recycling, are to vote on whether to launch industrial action.
The Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR), one of the UK’s leading economics consultancies, estimates the rail strikes will cause a loss of output of at least £91 million.
While ScotRail appears to have settled a dispute with its train drivers, the action from members of the National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers (RMT) union involves Network Rail, which maintains the lines and signals, which means that Scotland will still be affected.
London is expected to see the largest drop in output, partly as it has greater numbers of commuters and the Underground is also closing, but Scotland is forecast to see at least a £2.4 million drop over the three days.
The action is expected to leave only about one in five mainline services running around the UK, with some of those only operating for 12 hours.
A CEBR spokesman said: “The national strike will likely see further economic disruption by causing a loss of earnings for the workers and rail companies involved with the walkout, reducing spending by those who travel by rail to shops, knock-on effects for tourism spending and the potential to significantly intensify existing supply chain disruptions.”