Latest Rail News

01.10.15

NR given another extension to find a way to avoid £2m fine

Network Rail has been given a further extension to find a way to avoid the £2m fine for breaching its licence over its poor performance on Southern, Govia Thameslink (GTR) and in Scotland in 2014-15, RTM has learned. 

The infrastructure owner had been given an extension until 11 September to make representations to the Office of Rail and Road (ORR), with a decision expected at the regulator’s board meeting this month. 

Following the meeting, an ORR spokesperson told RTM: “Network Rail was given the opportunity to make representations in response to ORR’s decision and findings from the investigation into its performance in respect of passenger services on Southern and GTR. 

“Network Rail has requested more time to allow the company to submit options for possible reparations to mitigate the penalty.” 

She added that, in this case, the ORR has agreed the extension – no later than Friday 13 November – to enable Network Rail to develop a proposal to deliver benefits to passengers who were affected by the delays. 

In August, following an investigation into the infrastructure owner, the regulator said that performance on the three passenger routes were “below expectations” and “missed punctuality targets” in 2014-15. 

At the time, ORR chief executive Richard Price said the decision to impose the fine was not taken lightly, but that the penalty sends a clear message to the Network Rail Board – “Network Rail must urgently rectify these errors and deliver the reliability of services that passengers have paid for”. 

However, the often outspoken RMT general secretary, Mick Cash, said the ORR imposing a multi-million pound fines is “effectively the taxpayer fining themselves and that is a ludicrous way to run a railway”.

UPDATE

A Network Rail spokesperson told RTM: “The regulator has agreed to extend the deadline so we can further refine our proposals for reparations.”

Comments

Transtraxman   02/10/2015 at 10:40

I would expect any such fine to be paid not from the taxpayer to the taxpayer, but from the bonuses senior and middle management would have expected to receive for "achieving goals".

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