Latest Rail News

17.04.18

Failure to stop events increased by 10,000 in four years

Trains in Britain miss scheduled stops an average of 160 times a day, according to recent figures from Network Rail.

A Freedom of Information (FoI) request by the BBC revealed that in the financial year up to 23 February, over 52,000 services out of a planned six million had one or more failure to stop events.

Almost a third of these were on services operated by Govia Thameslink (GTR), with 16,000 failure to stop events in that period.

The figures showed that there were 10,000 more failure to stop events in the last financial year than in 2014-15.

A spokesperson for GTR said that skipping a stop is only ever a last resort when a train that is running late would prolong the disruption.

“We operate the country's most congested rail network and with a train departing every 27 seconds on average, even a minor delay to one train can cause a widespread and long-lasting knock-on effect to many other services and passengers across many routes,” they added.

The spokesperson also pointed out that there is no financial incentive for operators to miss a stop because it counts as a partial cancelation, which incurs a financial penalty.

Jacqueline Starr, managing director of customer experience for the Rail Delivery Group, said that, overall, less than 1% of stops are not made.

“This only happens as a last resort to prevent delayed services causing further disruption and while we understand this is frustrating, we ensure there are alternative options for customers to continue their journeys,” she explained.

Network Rail data has shown that primary delay from incidents has stayed relatively stable, but that reactionary delays have started to increase as the network has become more congested.

Starr added: “Working together, the partnership railway is delivering a long-term plan to change and improve, boosting punctuality by easing pressure on the busiest parts of the network.

"While the number of incidents causing delays and cancellations is going down, each incident is having a bigger impact due to congestion on the network and this is something that we are working hard together to get right.”

A Department for Transport spokesperson concluded: “While any inconvenience caused by stop-skipping to passengers is regrettable, it helps restore the timetable, benefitting many more people across the wider network.”

Top image: Gareth Fuller PA Wire

Have you got a story to tell? Would you like to become an RTM columnist? If so, click here.

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

related

Rail industry Focus

  • 11/09/2019The next generation of rail infrastructure

    How the rail industry delivers the next generation of complex infrastructure will rely heavily on the people tasked with leading the projects, and the technology they use to do it. Faithful+Gould...
  • 11/09/2019Putting passengers first

    How does the rail industry design the railways for the next 40 years, and when it does, how do we make sure it’s all done with the passenger in mind? Jane Fisher joined three members of the Arup team...
View all News

Comment

The challenge of completing Crossrail

05/07/2019The challenge of completing Crossrail

With a new plan now in place to deliver Crossrail, Hedley Ayres, National Audit Office manager, major projects and programmes, takes a look at ho... more >
Preparing the industry to deliver trains for the future

04/07/2019Preparing the industry to deliver trains for the future

The move to decarbonise the rail network involves shifting to cleaner modes of traction by 2050. David Clarke, technical director at the Railway ... more >

'the sleepers' blog

Connecting Network Rail with the supply chain

17/09/2019Connecting Network Rail with the supply chain

Continuing our mission to connect buyers with suppliers, This year TransCityRail North is adding a new element to the event. We are introducing an incomparable opportunity for you to meet with over 11 procurement directors from Network Rail... more >
read more blog posts from 'the sleeper' >

Interviews

Andrew Haines, CE of Network Rail, tells BBC News his organisation could issue future rail franchises

24/06/2019Andrew Haines, CE of Network Rail, tells BBC News his organisation could issue future rail franchises

Andrew Haines, the Chief Executive of Network Rail, has told the Today programme on Radio 4's BBC’s flagship news programme that he would not rule out his organisation issuing future r... more >
Malcolm Holmes, executive director of West Midlands Rail Executive, announced as TCR Midlands speaker in Birmingham

24/06/2019Malcolm Holmes, executive director of West Midlands Rail Executive, announced as TCR Midlands speaker in Birmingham

Ahead of his appearance, Malcolm Holmes spoke with Rail Technology Magazine about what key leaders in the industry were doing to improve rail in the Midlands. He said: “It’s very... more >