Rail jobs, staff issues and training

26.03.20

RIA: We are confident that the rail supply sector will continue to operate

As the UK comes to an end of its first week under lockdown to tackle this pandemic, members of the rail industry have voiced their support for the country’s response.  

Darren Caplan, The Railway Industry Association Chief Executive, has expressed his support for the country’s response to COVID-19.

Mr. Caplan said outbreak is, “a tragedy for the whole country.”

“Here in the railway industry, we hope that everyone, their family, friends and work colleagues, are safe and well at this very difficult time.”

He followed by saying RIA and the rail supply sector’s main priority will always be the safety, health and wellbeing of its workforce and the public.

“We should all work alongside the Government, client organisations and rail stakeholders to ensure what we do adheres to this.”

He explained that the Government guidance for the rail industry is clear.

“Though the political and public debate since the Prime Minister’s statement on 23 March has caused confusion. The Department for Transport’s current policy – endorsed by Number 10 – is that all construction activity should continue where it can be undertaken in accordance with the Public Health England and industry guidance.

“The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has said that with the exception of the organisations covered in the Prime Minister’s statement on closing non-essential shops and public spaces, the Government has not required any other businesses to close. Indeed, it argues it is important for business to carry on, and certain jobs require people to travel to their place of work – for instance, if they operate machinery, work in construction or manufacturing, or are delivering front line services.”

He concluded, “RIA will engage with the Government and clients, like Network Rail, to ensure our members are aware of Government guidance, and that their concerns and issues are raised with those charged with policy making or implementation.

“We are confident that at this tragic time, the rail supply sector will do what it can both to ensure rail services continue to operate – enabling both essential passenger and freight journeys on key routes – and, safely, continue to build the world-class railway we would all like to see for the future.”

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