Poor punctuality on rail network blamed on floods, staff shortages and rush-hour problems

12:47 11 January 2013

Floods, staff shortages and constant morning rush-hour problems combined to drag down rail punctuality last month.  Photo: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

Floods, staff shortages and constant morning rush-hour problems combined to drag down rail punctuality last month. Photo: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

Floods, staff shortages and constant morning rush-hour problems combined to drag down rail punctuality last month.

The two main London to Scotland companies - East Coast and Virgin West Coast - ran fewer than four in five trains on time in the period December 9 to January 5, Network Rail said.

London Midland, where passengers have experienced repeated staff shortages, only reached a 77.7 percent trains-on-time figure for the period.

But some companies ran almost all of their services on time, with London to Tilbury and Southend company c2c achieving a 98 percent figure.

Overall, a total of 88.2 percent of trains ran on time in the four-week period compared with 88.8 percent in the same period over the new year in 2011/12.

Virgin’s figure was 75.8 percent and East Coast only reached 77.2 percent.

But nine of the 19 companies achieved at least 90 percent, with London Overground reaching 96.9 percent.

A Network Rail spokesman said: “Severe weather with multiple flooding, landslide and embankment slip events caused severe disruption over a number of days to many train operators and particularly impacted our long-distance customers.”

Although the flooding did cause much disruption and London Midland’s staff problems contributed to the difficulties, passengers on many lines were also hit by a series of signal faults and broken-down trains at peak times.

Today’s figures, which come only a few days after passengers saw their season tickets rise by an average 4.2 percent, do not include cancellations and delays caused by planned engineering work.

They do include any disruption caused when engineering work finished late.

Taking the period from January 6 2012 to January 5 2013, train companies ran 91.4 percent of trains on time.

This is less than the 92.5 percent target for the period 2009-14 - a five-year average that Network Rail is set to miss.

Announcing to-be-approved £37.5bn plans for the railways earlier this week, the company said that its target for 2014-19 would be unchanged.

An Office of Rail Regulation spokesman said: “The regulator has asked Network Rail to explain the cause of these failings and to provide an update on its progress to improve performance on the key long-distance and London and South East routes.

“It is imperative the rail industry learns lessons and improves train punctuality for passengers in the future.”

RMT transport union leader Bob Crow said: “No matter how the government and the train companies try to dress this up, the fact is that rail travel was more efficient, punctual and cheaper under British Rail and we will continue to press the case for full renationalisation.”

Latest Stories from SNAP.PA

The 69-year-old was cleared of a second charge and the jury were unable to reach a verdict on a third.

Read more

Upset the summer’s pretty much over? Look at these stunning photos!

Read more

Research has shown which method of exercise is best at battling childhood and teenage obesity.

Read more

TOP Stories

Francis Olawole has been convicted of sexual assault on the rail network for a second time [Photograph from British Transport Police]

A man from Newham who sexually assaulted a woman and exposed himself to her on the DLR has been sentenced to 16 months in prison and placed on the sex offenders register for seven years.

Currently the flagship cycle path only has a thin strip of blue paint separating lorries from riders (Picture: TfL)

A £25million upgrade to the controversial Cycle Superhighway 2 in east London and protect cyclists on the dangerous route have been unveiled.

London's New Year's Eve fireworks have always been free - until now. Skint London want to rescue them from the Mayor's plans to charge £10. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)

Londoners were disappointed last week when Boris Johnson announced that the city’s beloved New Year’s Eve fireworks would no longer be free.

Promotions

Advanced running and training technology for beginners up to elite athletes

If you’re thinking of adding running treadmill to your fitness routine, you’re on the right track! There are several advantages to running on a treadmill versus running outdoors.

Renault-Zoe

The Renault ZOE follows on from the introduction of the electric Fluence ZE and Twizy, but unlike the former, the ZOE was designed from the ground up as an electric vehicle.

London Bloggers

Wednesday, September 17, 2014
The cast, including Josie Lawrence and Mike Myers

Simon Collins catches up with the improv impresarios, who despite being the world’s longest-running comedy show with the same cast, have lost none of the razor-sharp wit:

Monday, September 1, 2014
Do you really need an explanation for that?! (Pic by Serena Marinelli)

If you’ve ever seen an Italian movie, you would probably know how important body language is in the culture.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014
Don't waste any of your harvest

If you are now inundated with ripe tomatoes, juicy green beans, berries and herbs, don’t leave them to go stringy or mouldy because the freezer can go a long way to making your crops last well into winter.

Quizzes

(Photo by Ben Horton/Getty Images for Madame Tussauds Hollywood)

If there’s one thing that can change Londoners from nice, normal people into superhumans capable of extreme levels of rage and passive aggression, it’s the descent below-ground.

Read more
Do you fancy yourself as a football ground know-it-all? Try our devilishly difficult quiz!

How well do you know your football stadiums? This brand new quiz from London24 will seperate the men from the boys...

Read more
Do you know your Thames truths from the porkie pies? (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

So, you live (or work) in London, and you think you know the river well.

Read more