1pm weather update - Wednesday 1 December01/12/2010
TRAINS KEEP RUNNING DESPITE SEVERE WEATHER
1 December 2010
Severe winter weather continues today and continues to cause travel disruption across all transport modes. The vast majority of rail routes remain open although services in Kent, Yorkshire, Lincolnshire and Scotland are hardest hit.
Network Rail and the train operators have their full severe weather mitigation measures in place. A fleet of special engineering trains, including snowploughs and de-icers, are running continuously.
A further fleet of ‘ghost’ trains will be deployed tonight to help keep as many routes open as possible. Many hundreds of staff have been deployed on the ground to keep key junctions and points clear of snow and running normally.
Train companies, working with Network Rail, have also taken further measures, including:
• National Rail Enquiries (NRE), paid for and run by train companies, has today set up a dedicated phone hotline to provide passengers with up to date information about disruption caused by snow. The number is 08453 017641 and allows passengers to hear recorded information about the train company they travel with
• A number of train companies are running revised timetables to cope with the impact of the weather
Robin Gisby, director of operations and customer services, said: “In these kinds of conditions our priority is to keep people safe, keep routes open and keep trains moving. We want to make sure we get people home tonight by running the maximum number of trains we can, prioritising capacity over punctuality.”
The vast majority of services are running today with almost 80% of the timetable in operation, with less in hardest hit areas. As at 1pm today around 66% of services across the country are running to time
A spokesperson for the Association of Train Operating Companies (ATOC) said: “The snow and ice has caused disruption in some areas of the rail network and we understand passengers’ frustration where problems occur. Train companies and Network Rail are doing all they can to keep trains moving and get people to where they need to be, and while there are some services being cancelled or delayed, the majority of scheduled trains are getting through.
''The industry will continue to draw on all its resources and experience from last winter’s weather to get as many trains running as possible, with staff working through freezing conditions to keep depots, stations and tracks clear and safe.”
To get the most up-to-date information during wintry conditions,passengers should use the national rail enquiries website or phone-line:
• Check the NRE website at www.nationalrail.co.uk which includes all information about current disruption (www.nationalrail.co.uk/disruption), an overview of how trains are running for each operator (www.nationalrail.co.uk/status), live departure boards of train services and journey planners
• Call NRE’s automated train tracker service on 0871 200 49 50, which will give passengers up-to-date information about their services
• Subscribe to NRE Twitter updates at @nationalrailenq, or its NRE Disruption Facebook page
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