Rush-hour misery looms as London Tube workers start strike

London Underground station staff have begun a 24-hour strike that looks set to shut down much of the subway network for the morning rush hour.

The walkout began at 6 p.m. (1800 GMT) Sunday. Transit operator Transport for London says most stations in the city center will close and services will be "severely reduced" Monday, when millions return to work after the holiday season.

Unions are protesting job cuts and ticket-office closures, which they say could harm safety.

Weekend negotiations ended without agreement, and the unions say management hasn't done enough to address staff concerns. But London Underground chief operating officer Steve Griffiths says the transit operator has agreed to hire hundreds of new station staff.

London's subway system handles more than 4 million journeys during a typical business day.