Wednesday, 19 March 2008

We must get better at keeping the trains running

Commenting on the NAO report into Network Rail’s handling of rail accidents and incidents, Liberal Democrat Shadow Transport Secretary, Norman Baker said:

“If we are to have a railway fit for the 21st century passengers must have confidence that Network Rail is able to keep the trains running.

“Some delays are inevitable but there is much more that can be done to move towards a genuine seven day rail service.

“Single line working should be reintroduced where possible so that one track can remain open while engineering works continue.

“If the railways are to continue to grow passengers must be offered a good and reliable service, rather than constantly being faced with delays and cancellations.”

At the same time, the virtual auction for scarce modern rolling stock has seen First Great Western (serving South Wales) succeed in obtaining new train sets to improve its poor reliability, while Arriva has to delay its promised improvement in the quality of its services to North Wales.

The love of roads by the deputy first minister does not help, either.

See also Eleanor Burnham and Peter Black.

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