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Striking Phoenix bus drivers vote on new contract

Bus drivers picket in front of a Phoenix bus depot, as they join more than 600 Phoenix area transit bus drivers who went on strike March 10 in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

More than 600 striking Phoenix bus drivers are voting on a new contract Thursday and could be back behind the wheel by the end of the week.

Another 310 striking Tempe drivers are set to vote on their new contract on Friday.

The drivers represented by Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1433 went on strike against bus operator Veolia transportation Services last weekend.

The strike crippled bus service in metropolitan Phoenix, leaving many workers and students stranded or struggling to find other transportation.

The striking drivers operate 50 of the 101 bus routes on the combined Valley Metro regional bus service.

If the contracts are approved, Phoenix drivers could be back to work Friday and Tempe drivers on Saturday.

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