Railway safety and crime

28.08.20

Rail industry to increase services to boost passenger confidence

Just in time for going back to school, from Monday 7th September, train services will increase to near pre-Covid outbreak levels, as part of the introduction of a new timetable formulated to build on the improved punctuality performance seen during the lockdown period.

Since April, the number of trains arriving on time to the minute remains at an all-time high of 80%-90% and within five to ten minutes, routinely above 95%.

As more service are gradually introduced, some current train times will alter from Sunday 6th September, including on routes into cities.

When designing the new timetable, train operators have worked meticulously with local schools and education providers to find potentially busy stations or trains and certain parts of routes that will experience high demand for travel by school children when they go back.

Therefore, where possible in these areas, train operators will run more regular services or add extra carriages to create extra room and staff will be on hand to explain to older children the rule son wearing a face covering and maintaining social distancing. Train operators are also working with schools to advise parents and school children how to use the network safely.

As part of the industry ‘Safer Travel Pledge’, which was announced at the beginning of July, rail companies have heightened their cleaning efforts on trains and at stations, are providing soap and sanitiser, and have set out clear instructions to maintain social distancing.

To keep themselves and others safe, passengers must wear a face covering on trains and at stations unless they are exempt.

Jacqueline Starr, Chief Operating Officer at the Rail Delivery Group, representing train operators and Network Rail, said: “We want people to feel confident taking the train as they get back to school and adding services back into the timetable where they’re most needed will support that.

“Rail companies are doing everything they can to ensure people start the term with a smooth journey, including boosting cleaning, providing sanitiser at stations and offering better information about busy services. Some train times will change so we’re asking people to check before they travel and plan their journeys for quieter times if possible.”

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