The Sydney train network has been suspended today after the Transport for NSW said a breakdown in negotiations at the weekend made it “impossible” to run the network safely.

Customers have been urged to avoid travel or seek alternative options including buses and light rail.

The decision to cancel NSW and Sydney trains was made by the transport authority last night after talks regarding workers’ pay and conditions reached a stalemate at the weekend.

RTBU NSW Secretary Alex Claassens made it clear on ABC News this morning that the workers were “not on strike” and called the move to lock workers out was a “dummy spit”. He said staff arrived to take part in low-level industrial action which would not have impacted commuters but were told by management that trains would not be running.

“The ball is in their court, our members are ready to go to work. As soon as the government decides they want to run trains, we can run them,” Claassens told the Sydney Morning Herald.

Sydney Trains chief executive Matt Longland told 2GB radio it would be a very difficult day and obviously blamed the union.

NSW TrainLink intercity trains, including from Newcastle, the Blue Mountains and Kiama, were also impacted.

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