DENVER (AP) -- Qwest and a union representing 25-thousand workers have suspended contract talks following a marathon session yesterday.
The Communications Workers of America has also notified the company that it's terminated the contract. The contract expired at midnight but the two sides agreed to stay at the table and negotiated until four this morning.
Talks are on hold now but negotiators are expected to meet again later today in hopes of averting a strike.
Union spokeswoman Candice Johnson says employees will report to work as normal and the day-to-day provisions of the contract remain in place.
Workers and the national union's executive board have voted to authorize a strike. The union president would have to set a date before a walkout could take place.
The contract covers Qwest workers in 13 states (Arizona, Colorado, Iowa, Idaho, Minnesota, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington and Wyoming). The company is based in Denver.
(Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)