Delays due to "train cancellations"

Dstock7080

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What's the most likely situation this weekend regarding the Metropolitan line?
Scheduled to be no service Baker Street-Aldgate but a software upgrade is required for SMA 3 commissioning so services likely suspended south of Wembley until 1000 on Saturday
 
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700007

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Scheduled to be no service Baker Street-Aldgate but a software upgrade is required for SMA 3 commissioning so services likely suspended south of Wembley until 1000 on Saturday
Oh yes I think I saw something about that - how about on the signallers front? Any likely chance of the line being completely shut on Sunday or early/lates like we have seen the last two weekends or is that something that we will have to wait and see?
 

Mojo

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Oh yes I think I saw something about that - how about on the signallers front? Any likely chance of the line being completely shut on Sunday or early/lates like we have seen the last two weekends or is that something that we will have to wait and see?
Unless I'm mistaken it's not been the signallers that they are short of but Service Controllers.
 

Dstock7080

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Oh yes I think I saw something about that - how about on the signallers front? Any likely chance of the line being completely shut on Sunday or early/lates like we have seen the last two weekends or is that something that we will have to wait and see?
There have been no issues with signallers, Service Controllers have been the problem.
With the commissioning of SMA 3 its thought that this would proceed with no problems.
 

Chriso

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I’m currently on the Met and it is pretty dire. I had a 18 min wait at Ruislip for a city bound train. Dep board at Wembley Pk showing southbound departures in 1,4 and 12 mins which are big gaps compared to normal.

TFL showing severe delays on

. Met
. H & C
. Circle (Suspended as of 13.30)
. District
. Bakerloo (suspended Queens Pk to Harrow & Wealdstone)

All due to train cancelations.
 

172101

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It's always the same 5 lines that have cancellations or no service every day.
On the surface lines the lack of controllers is one thing but why all the cancellations?
And why is the Bakerloo always closing early/starting up late or not running a service at all?
This started over the Christmas and new year period and has got to the point now that you just can't rely on anything running from day to day now.
There may have been a lot of staff self issolating but that shouldn't be the case now.
It does seem odd that all the other tube lines run near normal services daily with a few cancelations but the Bakerloo always has problems.
 

bramling

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It's always the same 5 lines that have cancellations or no service every day.
On the surface lines the lack of controllers is one thing but why all the cancellations?
And why is the Bakerloo always closing early/starting up late or not running a service at all?
This started over the Christmas and new year period and has got to the point now that you just can't rely on anything running from day to day now.
There may have been a lot of staff self issolating but that shouldn't be the case now.
It does seem odd that all the other tube lines run near normal services daily with a few cancelations but the Bakerloo always has problems.

Whilst Covid is a factor, recruitment logjam is starting to bite too. For essentially most of the last year, training and recruitment have been heavily disrupted. Meanwhile people have continued to retire / resign as usual, in fact some people have brought theirs forward, the hassle of Covid being one one common reason. The taxation measures in the budget may well influence a few more to bring their retirement forward a bit. Why faff about having the job up the wall every day when could just be at home taking pretty much the same home in pension payments? Add in a few ER issues in a few locations, Hammersmith unfortunately very much being one of those, and it’s easy to see how there’s issues.

The difficulty is to recruit someone like a line controller, you’re essentially requiring a chain of backfill - for example a trainee controller might mean a train operator vacancy, which in turn is likely to mean a CSA vacancy. Then remember despite best-laid plans, a proportion of trainee controllers find themselves failing the course, sometimes some way in. Easy to see why things are challenging.
 

Lewlew

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It's always the same 5 lines that have cancellations or no service every day.
On the surface lines the lack of controllers is one thing but why all the cancellations?
And why is the Bakerloo always closing early/starting up late or not running a service at all?
This started over the Christmas and new year period and has got to the point now that you just can't rely on anything running from day to day now.
There may have been a lot of staff self issolating but that shouldn't be the case now.
It does seem odd that all the other tube lines run near normal services daily with a few cancelations but the Bakerloo always has problems.
Bakerloo is a mixture of lack of controllers, lack of drivers as well as a lack of trains, Stonebridge depot are struggling.

Also, when the Bakerloo is running a special service (managed locally, instead of running to a timetable) then it runs in two sections, Queens Park to Elephant as well as Queens Park to Harrow. With 10-15 trains in the tunnel providing a 3-7 minute service. And up to 3 trains running Harrow's providing a 20 minute service.

But recently, the tripcock tester at Harrow has been decommissioned by Network Rail due to it becoming defective. It is a requirement for a train to have it's tripcock tested at least once every trip. In normal service this wouldn't be a problem for Harrow's as they would continue past Queens Park towards Elephant and get tested at Baker Street. But when they are only going to Queens Park, they aren't being tested and therefore can't run.

They tried running trains and sending them to the depot every 2 trips to be tested by depot staff but was unworkable, they also tried running through trains to Elephant but didn't have enough trains to run a decent Harrow service.
 

Mojo

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With regards to Train Operator availability; also bear in mind that the Subsurface and the Bakerloo lines are worse affected because the Tube lines (except the Bakerloo) have been able to utilise the Night Tube Train Operators the majority of which have accepted a temporary secondment to cover the regular service. Obviously the Bakerloo & Subsurface don’t have Night Tube so cant make use of this extra pool.
 

172101

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Thanks everyone for explaining the problems.
Would it not be better for TFL to explain all this to the public, instead of just saying " due to cancellations" ?
I have never understood why everything at TFL is secretive, if the public were told the truth a bit more they would be far more understanding.
Even when the lines are closed no reason is given.
Network rail seem to give out far more information about issues.

This is today:

LUL: Bakerloo Line Services Disrupted

Bakerloo Line: No service between Queen's Park and Harrow & Wealdstone and SEVERE DELAYS on the rest of the line due to train cancellations. Tickets are being accepted on London Buses
 

DavyCrocket

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The new signalling is now open for the public so passengers are able to travel between Stepney Green and Euston Square and Monument
 

bramling

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Thanks everyone for explaining the problems.
Would it not be better for TFL to explain all this to the public, instead of just saying " due to cancellations" ?
I have never understood why everything at TFL is secretive, if the public were told the truth a bit more they would be far more understanding.
Even when the lines are closed no reason is given.
Network rail seem to give out far more information about issues.

This is today:

LUL: Bakerloo Line Services Disrupted

Bakerloo Line: No service between Queen's Park and Harrow & Wealdstone and SEVERE DELAYS on the rest of the line due to train cancellations. Tickets are being accepted on London Buses

The reason TfL is so cryptic is for one simple reason - TfL is a political organisation linked in with the mayoral process. IMO TfL would be all the better without this involvement, and focussing instead on running trains and buses.
 

Hadders

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Bizarre situation at Baker Street yesterday. Platform screens saying the H&C Line trains were running to Barking, On train automated announcement and display screens said trains was to Kings Cross St Pancras. Pre-recorded station announcements said trains were terminating at Euston Square.

The train I was on terminated at Euston Square.
 

Dstock7080

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Bizarre situation at Baker Street yesterday. Platform screens saying the H&C Line trains were running to Barking, On train automated announcement and display screens said trains was to Kings Cross St Pancras. Pre-recorded station announcements said trains were terminating at Euston Square.

The train I was on terminated at Euston Square.
Trains were indeed running through to Barking before 1330, so the platform screens were correct although without passengers!
Unfortunately S Stock are unable to display the required Euston Square, Monument or Stepney Green so King’s Cross, Tower Hill and Whitechapel had to be used.
So a temporary blip for a day and a half, which has resulted in more accurate platform displays and a new signalling system between the stations concerned.
 

bramling

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Bizarre situation at Baker Street yesterday. Platform screens saying the H&C Line trains were running to Barking, On train automated announcement and display screens said trains was to Kings Cross St Pancras. Pre-recorded station announcements said trains were terminating at Euston Square.

The train I was on terminated at Euston Square.

Bit of an unusual situation.

The new system does have the ability to display any destination on the line (whether a normal reversing point or not), however with this having been a trial running weekend, presumably things were being run as if it was normal service, just with each train being emptied of passengers at the boundary. This will be why Barking was being shown. In normal times, if a train is to run empty then the signalman will simply highlight on the screen the section of the run which is going to be empty and change the status from passenger to empty, and the platform indicators would display accordingly - the snag is that the door controls will be inhibited when the train arrives at stations in the empty section, which presumably they didn’t wish to do during the trial weekend, when there would be a desire to attempt to run everything as close to reality as possible.

As for the train displaying KX, I suspect the list of destinations on an S stock omits to include Euston Square, as it was never a reversing point. Though ironically as part of the new signalling system it now is one. The destination display on the train is independent to the ones on the platform indicators (the former is setup by the driver, the latter by the signalling system). KX will simply have been the nearest they could get.

The Northern had exactly the same when they commissioned their new system, on trial weekends there were odd destinations like Angel or Oval. Again the train couldn’t display them, and the signalling system could but they wanted to simulate as close to normal as possible. ISTR some destination plates were made to fix inside the cab windows specially for the occasion, a few of which no doubt found their way to Ebay!

From your report, it does seem like on this occasion the passenger information was a little lacking, but it will have been a one-off situation - at least as far as the platform indicators were concerned. Trains not being able to display every possible station isn’t new - going back to the days of manual destination blinds some lines only had a small handful of destinations. On something like an old Northern Line 59 stock quite a few potential destinations were missing from the blinds, Euston springs to mind for one.
 
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Hadders

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Thanks for the explanation. As it happens I was only going as far as Euston Square so it wasn't a problem for me. I was more annoyed at just missing a train and having to wait 14 minutes!
 

Dstock7080

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What's the situation looking like this weekend?
This weekend, due to staff shortages:
No service on the Circle
A reduced service on the Metropolitan. Chiltern Railways will run a normal service, although there will be no service between 1900-2100 each evening
No service on the District between 1900-2100 each High Street Kensington-Edgware Road
No service on the Hammersmith and City and District will be suspended West Ham-Tower Hill due to existing engineering works
 

philthetube

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This weekend, due to staff shortages:
No service on the Circle
A reduced service on the Metropolitan. Chiltern Railways will run a normal service, although there will be no service between 1900-2100 each evening
No service on the District between 1900-2100 each High Street Kensington-Edgware Road
No service on the Hammersmith and City and District will be suspended West Ham-Tower Hill due to existing engineering works
I wonder if these are going to be ongoing problems over the next year, regardless of covid, due to the time it will take to train new staff.
 

TitanMike

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This weekend, due to staff shortages:
No service on the Circle
A reduced service on the Metropolitan. Chiltern Railways will run a normal service, although there will be no service between 1900-2100 each evening
No service on the District between 1900-2100 each High Street Kensington-Edgware Road
No service on the Hammersmith and City and District will be suspended West Ham-Tower Hill due to existing engineering works

I believe the previous rail replacement bus services will be operating from around 1800 on both days this weekend.
 

sammyg901

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Bit of a headache for Chiltern as they were relying on the Met to Hillingdon and Aylesbury via Amersham services during a closure of their mainline for engineering. They're switching their buses to West Ruislip with passengers for stations north swapping at High Wycombe instead of Aylesbury Vale Parkway. Buses extend to Great Missenden for shuttles to Aylesbury for intermediate Chiltern "met line" stations
 

700007

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Buses this week as follows

ML-1 Wembley Park to Rayners Lane all stations to be operated by Sullivan Buses every 15 minutes

ML-2 Harrow-on-the-Hill to Watford all stations except Moor Park but calls additionally at Rickmansworth, to be operated by Abellio London every 15 minutes

ML-3 Rickmansworth to Amersham calling at Chorleywood and Chalfont & Latimer, to be operated by Abellio London every 30 minutes

ML-5 Northwood to Moor Park shuttle bus service, to be operated by Sullivan Buses every 30 minutes

ML-6 Amersham to Chesham shuttle bus service, to be operated by Arriva The Shires on behalf of Arriva London every 30 minutes

Buses start after 1800 both days until end of service.

Update as of 1200 Saturday 13th March

Metropolitan and Piccadilly lines suspended South / Harrow to Uxbridge due to no service control staff.

Metropolitan line suspended all weekend to and from Amersham due to lack of available drivers. The few trains that are able to run will divert to Chesham. Passengers advised to use Chiltern or rail replacement buses when they begin operating later this evening.

No service Baker Street to Aldgate due to planned engineering work. Significantly reduced service operating Baker Street to Watford and Chesham.

District line unable to run between Olympia, Earl's Court and Edgware Road due to lack of station staff.

Situation quite grim for LUL. Don't envy their position but understand that tough choices have to be made. Well done to those who are still able to work in a very difficult situation.
 
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Dstock7080

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slightly changed today with Central and Piccadilly both reporting “delays due to unavailability of train operators”
Circle Line and District Line no Olympia service “due to unavailability of service control staff“

update:
Piccadilly and Central Lines now reverted to usual “because of train cancellations”
 

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Horizon22

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The District line closed a few times yesterday due to "shortage of control room staff" and then the Edgware Rd section closed completely after 1800. No tube services at all from Paddington and Edgware Rd due to the other closures. Can anyone confirm that "control room staff" are like controllers on NR who aren't safety critical and can often do things like have breaks at their desk or more like a NR signaller?

Yes I think there's massive issues with availability of Met/C&H control staff. In short, it seems no one wants to be one!

Control staff on National Rail lines are generally quite well paid (TOCs particularly) and reasonably well-sought after positions, so why so different on LU?
 

Dstock7080

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Can anyone confirm that "control room staff" are like controllers on NR who aren't safety critical and can often do things like have breaks at their desk or more like a NR signaller?
There are Service Controllers (controllers) and Service Operators (signallers) who are entitled to agreed 30min breaks during their, sometimes 12hr, shift.
 

Horizon22

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There are Service Controllers (controllers) and Service Operators (signallers) who are entitled to agreed 30min breaks during their, sometimes 12hr, shift.

I am imagining therefore there must have been a Service Controller shortage as there was a short closure around 1200 and then at 1800 it closed completely, presumably as the 0600-1800 12hr shift ended with no night turn cover.
 

Snow1964

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Currently got :
4 lines with planned Closure (Bakerloo, Circle, H&C, W&C)
Central line with severe delays due to train cancellations
District is part closure, part suspended, minor delays*
Overground and Met planned closure, part closure
Piccadilly part closure minor delays
TfL rail reduced service
4 lines good service (Jubilee, Victoria, Northern, Tram)

Not sure a potential passenger is going to consider severe delays and reduced service that differently, so why distinguish

*District Line: No service Earls Court to Kensington Olympia due to train cancellations. No service between High Street Kensington and Edgware Road due the unavailability of control room staff. No service between Tower Hill and West Ham due to planned engineering work. Minor delays between Earl's Court and Wimbledon due to an earlier signal failure at Parsons Green. Tickets valid on local buses and South Western Railways.


Wonder why “Planned closure, part closure“ is used, sort of implies there is unplanned part, without saying so, so why not just part closure or partial closure if too scared to say unplanned
 

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