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ORR calls for passenger information boost

Passenger information still needs improvement, the ORR’s latest report shows.

The assessment took place nine months after the TOCs and Network Rail signed up to ORR’s obligations for appropriate, accurate and timely information.

The ORR found there are now robust plans and processes in place to improve passenger information, and it is now part of many operators’ staff training. Smartphones are also being introduced to keep staff up to date with the latest information.

The new £8m ATOC project to link up passenger information screens across the network will also drive consistency and quality.

Use of social media was also praised, with operators using Twitter to communicate directly with passengers, particularly during disruption.

But the latest National Passenger Survey showed only a third of passengers felt that delays were handled well and the latest ORR assessment found inconsistencies between information provided and what is happening in reality.

ORR chief executive, Richard Price, said: “We have reviewed industry performance and initial findings show that while each train operator approaches the issues differently, there is a widespread commitment to improving the quality of information for passengers. New plans, staff training and technology have been introduced to help deliver better, speedier and more consistent information for passengers.

“However…ORR’s review found that there are still examples of poor provision of information across the network. Passengers highlighted examples of delays in being informed that an incident is over, and, frustratingly, there are still examples of inconsistencies between information shown on platform screens and what is happening in reality. There really is no longer an excuse for this.

“Passengers want assurance that Network Rail and train operators continue to take passenger information seriously, and that is exactly what we are pressing for. The industry is getting there, but there’s still a lot of work to be done.”

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Ken   14/12/2012 at 14:48

Information available on smart phones, twitter? What about people don't have these gadgets? And how do you access them when you are kicking your heels in stations, or on platforms waiting for trains that never come? How about making wifi free in stations and on trains?

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