NBC10's IBEW Local 98 employees, including camera operators and photographers, walked off the job Thursday evening, according to the TV station - two days before Pope Francis was to arrive in Philadelphia.

"While it is unfortunate that IBEW Local 98 has decided to engage in a job action, we remain committed to ensuring this has no impact on our broadcast," according to a statement from NBC10. "Our viewers will continue to have full access to all of our local news and information without interruption. We remain steadfast in our commitment to achieve a mutual resolution of our outstanding issues."

A spokesman for NBC10 said the station had no other details, including the number of union workers who walked and why.

A union representative said it came down to collapsed contract talks Thursday.

"At the behest of upper management at Comcast, IBEW Local 98 stayed at the negotiating table for more than a year after our contract expired," James Foy, the local's assistant business manager, said. "Then, a new NBC management team from New York City came in, after the completion of the NBC Universal deal. They let one final piece of the new contract that would have provided employment for only one or two union members - at no cost to them - destroy the other 95 percent of the already agreed-upon terms and a year's worth of negotiations.

"And, incredibly, they did this on the eve of the pope's visit, an event that Local 98, Comcast and so many others have worked so hard to make a success," Foy said.

Foy also would not disclose the number who went on strike.

The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, which has a membership of about 5,000, is represented by business manager John Dougherty.