Rail Delivery Group
Rail industry working hard to keep passengers moving during floods
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Rail industry working hard to keep passengers moving during floods
type Press release
While the majority of rail services are operating as normal, bad weather and flooding continues to cause major disruption in some areas.
In those areas affected, train operators and Network Rail are working together to minimise disruption to passengers and get them safely to their destinations.
For almost two months, parts of the rail network have been hit by severe weather, with Network Rail estimating damage to the railway totalling £100m so far. Around 4,000 staff have been working round the clock to tackle storm damage and flooding issues, including pumping away flood water and repairing tracks so that as many trains as possible can run safely.
Steps taken by train companies to help passengers include:
o Redeploying staff to frontline roles to ensure passengers get the information they need to complete their journeys
o Sending thousands of tweets to keep passengers informed about changes to services
o Lifting some ticket restrictions so where possible, passengers can travel on other operators’ services or make their journey at a later date
o Putting in place arrangements to allow train tickets to be used on local bus services
o Arranging replacement bus services where road conditions permit
A spokesperson for the Rail Delivery Group, which speaks on behalf of the rail industry, said:
“We would like to apologise to any passenger whose journey has been affected by the bad weather, and thank them for their patience. Rail staff are working around the clock to keep passengers informed and to clear and repair tracks so trains can get people to their destinations.
“Unfortunately, where the damage is most severe, some routes will see disruption for some time after flood water has receded while tracks are checked and repair work carried out. Passengers in affected areas should check www.nationalrail.co.uk or their train company website for the latest information before setting off on their journey.”
The following train companies have seen some of the worst localised disruption. For more information please contact the operators directly.
First Great Western
Maidenhead – weeks of wet weather has led to groundwater flooding which has damaged signalling and safety equipment. FGW are only able to run four trains an hour between Reading and London Paddington, less than a fifth of normal service levels, and services are running at reduced speeds causing delays of up to an hour. Passengers are advised not to travel unless absolutely necessary.
Dawlish – the sea wall collapse means trains cannot run between Exeter and Newton Abbot. Network Rail estimate repairs will take at least six weeks.
Taunton – flooding means the line to Bridgewater is closed.
Hinksey – flooding means Oxford to Didcot services have been reduced to hourly shuttle trains, supported by rail replacement buses.
Extra staff have been deployed to the worst affected areas to provide advice and information for passengers. Staff from other First Group operators have travelled down to help, and FGW staff have volunteered to work off duty.
FGW has lifted ticket restrictions across all services, allowing customers with Advance and Off Peak tickets to travel on any available service, via any reasonable route, up to and including Friday 14 February.
Anyone affected by south west flooding will be eligible for a full refund and admin fees have been waived.
Anyone affected by Dawlish disruption can get 25% discount on walk-up fares, and the same discount applies to monthly and annual season tickets on a pro-rata basis. The discounts will remain in place until the line reopens.
Tickets are being accepted by Chiltern, CrossCountry, London Midland, South West Trains, Virgin Trains and London Underground.
FGW is offering additional car parking at Exeter St Davids station from Monday, and is working to provide additional spaces at Tiverton Parkway.
The operator has areas of localised disruption, but is advising passengers that most lines are open and many services are still running to amended timetables.
South West – Damage to the railway at Dawlish and flooding near Bridgwater in Somerset means that services to and from the South West will be disrupted this week and potentially beyond Thames Valley – Flooding near Oxford is causing disruption on services through Oxford.
Passengers with Advance tickets to or from stations west of Bristol, or for journeys in the Thames Valley, may travel on earlier or later trains as desired or necessary. CrossCountry tickets may also be used for travel on Chiltern, First Great Western and South West Trains services.
South West Trains
Datchet – flooding here and between Staines and Windsor has blocked the line. Network Rail does not expect the line to be open until the end of the week at the earliest. A replacement bus service is running but cannot call at every stop due to poor road conditions.
Botley – a landslip means trains cannot run between Eastleigh and Fareham. Network Rail expects the line to be closed until the end of February. Trains between London and Portsmouth via Eastleigh are being diverted and not calling at Botley or Hedge End.
Passengers may use First Great Western services on all reasonable routes and London Underground services between Paddington and Waterloo.
Oxted – Landslips mean that the line between Oxted and Woldingham will be closed for up to a week:
o A half hourly service is running between London Victoria and Woldingham.
o An amended train service on the East Grinstead and Uckfield lines south of Woldingham will be in place from today (Tuesday) and rail replacement buses will be in place on these lines to connect passengers travelling between stations south of Woldingham and London.
o As many rail replacement buses as possible are being provided.
Southeastern are accepting Southern tickets between Tunbridge Wells and London, and passengers can use local bus services.
Landslides between Robertsbridge and Battle, and at Stonegate are causing disruption on the line between Tonbridge and Hastings. Rail replacement buses are in operation. Network Rail expects the line to be closed until the end of February.
Passengers can use Southern services between Hastings and Ashford International, and London Underground services between London King's Cross, St Pancras, Victoria and London Bridge.
Car parking tickets will be accepted at any station car parks between Frant and Robertsbridge.
Arriva Trains Wales
Flooding has caused the following lines to close: Cardiff Central to Shrewsbury; Barmouth to Pwllheli; and Newtown to Welshpool. Limited rail replacement bus services are in operation but not all routes are covered.
Network Rail expects repair work at a number of locations including Tywyn, Barmouth and Criccieth, to take several months.
Railhub Archive ::: 2014-02-11 RDG-001