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Railhub Archive
2006-04-03 TSC-001
Transport Scotland


Inspections of trains and stations

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Transport Scotland

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Transport Scotland

Inspections of trains and stations

3 April 2006
source Transport Scotland
type Press release

Is the Fort William train station clean? How much litter was on the last train you were on? Is the passenger information at Mallaig accurate? Does anyone care if train services are of a good standard?

A dedicated team of SQUIRE inspectors care about all of these issues. They will be coming to inspect trains and stations on the Upper Tyndrum to Mallaig line in the Highlands, from Saturday 1 April as part of a scheme being rolled out across Scotland.

Transport Scotland is driving forward improvements in public transport services by ensuring First ScotRail deliver a high level of customer service for rail passengers in Scotland. The agency is introducing SQUIRE (Service QUality Incentive REgime), which is one of the toughest performance monitoring regimes in the UK, on a roll-out basis across Scotland.

The performance monitoring regime consists of a team of SQUIRE inspectors who will inspect each of the stations and a sample of trains on the Upper Tyndrum to Mallaig line. The SQUIRE inspectors will inspect everything from graffiti and availability of timetables to train cleanliness and the staff and public address system.

Staff in stations on the Upper Tyndrum to Mallaig line can expect at least one visit within each 28 day period but will not receive any advance notice of the days that SQUIRE inspectors will visit. Upon inspection, if the inspector finds problems with any of the areas inspected then it will be marked as a failure.

At the end of the inspection, the SQUIRE inspector will compile a report which is submitted to FirstScotrail normally within 24 hours. FirstScotrail are then given a deadline, usually less than a week to rectify the problems highlighted. Thereafter a SQUIRE inspector will carry out a follow-up inspection and should the problem still remain then FirstScotrail can incur consequential financial penalties.

At the end of each quarter the overall performance of FirstScotrail is assessed and any performance that falls under an acceptable level can result in financial penalties for FirstScotrail.

Gordon Hannah, SQUIRE Operations Manager, Transport Scotland said:

“This scheme has already helped to make great improvements to rail services in other parts of the country. As a member of the SQUIRE team I can confirm that we are excited to be starting inspections on this line. We take great pride in our work and are determined to help make significant improvements for rail passengers in the area.”

The stations on the Upper Tyndrum to Mallaig line are: Upper Tyndrum, Bridge of Orchy, Rannoch, Corrour, Tulloch, Roy Bridge, Spean Bridge, Fort William, Banavie, Corpach, Loch Eil, Locheilside, Glenfinnan, Lochailfort, Beasdale, Arisaig, Morar, Mallaig.

Work is underway to roll SQUIRE out to the remaining areas of Scotland.

There are 340 stations in Scotland and 3000km of track. Every year FirstScotrail runs 35 million train kilometres with passengers travelling a total of two billion km. There are 650,000 rail services and over 69 million passenger journeys a year.

The SQUIRE scheme currently operates in all areas of Central Scotland.

There have already been two 4 week trials carried out where SQUIRE Inspections have been carried out on the Upper Tyndrum to Mallaig line, and FirstScotrail have been notified of any failures but have not as yet occurred the associated penalties.

Railhub Archive ::: 2006-04-03 TSC-001


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