Is there an obligation to provide rail replacement buses

Discussion in 'UK Railway Discussion' started by 91104, 6 Mar 2019.

  1. 91104

    91104 Member

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    As per the title do train operating companies have an obligation to provide rail replacement buses to cover planned cancelled trains?
    The reason I ask is because of overnight engineering work Greater Anglia are cancelling the first up service of a morning from Southend Victoria to Liverpool St and starting it from Shenfield instead but not providing any bus replacement to connect with the train at Shenfield.
    This is very inconvenient for myself and others who use this train who need to be in London early as the first up train now doesn’t arrive at Liverpool St until 05.42 rather than 05.06 and people are left with the choice of either paying for an expensive taxi or taking out a second mortgage to drive to Shenfield and park. Seems wrong that Greater Anglia can do this when people need to get into London early.
     
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  3. APT618S

    APT618S Member

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    Well LNER also do this if weekend engineering works close part of the line. For example this Sat (09 Mar) the latest time you can leave London KGX for Newcastle is 2000 (and there is a bus York-Darlington) rather than the usual 2100. Anybody using the 2100 will not get to Newcastle until 1007 Sun morning according to NRE rather than the usual 0005. There is no replacement bus to link in with the 2100 which terminates at York.
     
  4. 12guard4

    12guard4 Member

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    To answer your question, no they do not have to.
     
  5. higthomas

    higthomas Member

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    Surely they're breaking their franchise commitments by not doing so though?
     
  6. JN114

    JN114 Established Member

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    Only if cancelling a service takes the service below the minimum agreed service level. You’d be surprised how far above and beyond the minimum service level some TOCs operate.
     
  7. higthomas

    higthomas Member

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    Fair enough, although I'd have thought many of the ones mentioned (i.e. early and late services) would be the sort which are only run because of said commitments?

    Edit: I've had a look at the train service requirements for the Greater Anglia franchise. (Found here). They are missing most of the current Monday to Friday commitments, but on Saturday, they are required to have at least one train arriving into London from Southend Victoria before 0515, so I'd assume that it's the same on weekdays. Therefore they are in breach of said commitments.
     
    Last edited: 6 Mar 2019
  8. yorkie

    yorkie Administrator Staff Member Administrator

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    There is an obligation to get you to your destination and they should be acting reasonably to minimise delay, but it would be impracticable to stipulate that every cancelled train must have a bus replacement.
    I think that is poor by Greater Anglia. You are entitled to Delay Repay compensation of course.
     
  9. Alfie1014

    Alfie1014 Member

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    Interesting I hope that the ommision of most of the TSR-1 for weekdays is just a simple mistake. Getting back to the core issue as these changes are a 'short term' alteration whilst the engineering works are on and I assume agreed by the DfT they presumably are not deemed to be in breach.

    Looking at the standard running times for rail replacement buses it is 1 hour 40 minutes from Southend Vic to Shenfield. At this time of the morning you could probably shave off some time but even at around 90 minutes the RRB would have to leave at 02:50, you do have to wonder how many passengers would get up this much earlier to still get in by 05:06?

    You aren't a constituant of Mark Francois MP https://www.markfrancois.com by any chance? Because it was his lobbying about the disruption to late evening weekday services due to engineering work that got NR, GA and DfT to agree to remove the first train in compensation for later evening trains during the works. And not forgetting the the 9 day shut down planned for the Spring Bank Holiday week when the line between Wickford and Southend Victoria will be closed that was agreed at the same time.
     
  10. Metal_gee_man

    Metal_gee_man Member

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    Am I the only one that thinks that temporary ticket acceptance on C2C towards Fenchurch St would be a justified mitigation for not running a bus when there are 4 trains between 05.05 and 05.37 from Southend Central
     
  11. MPotter

    MPotter On Moderation

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    This is typical for Greater Anglia, at an unstaffed station you would be best advised to use the "ticket assistance" function on a TVM (if available) to contact Greater Anglia.

    However they might be willing to refund out of pocket expenses in getting to and/or parking at Shenfield if you ask nicely. I'm not sure they would have to though. I would personally advise just using C2C from Southend Central to Fenchurch St.
     
  12. JN114

    JN114 Established Member

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    They have to provide alternative arrangements - ticket acceptance onto broadly equivalent services would suffice for occasional cases.
     
  13. 12guard4

    12guard4 Member

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    Would a bus be any quicker than just waiting for the next service that is running.
     
  14. higthomas

    higthomas Member

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    From Southend yes, from other stations along the line, no.
     
  15. 91104

    91104 Member

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    Well not if it turned up at the same time the train would be due but the train in question departs from Wickford at 04.21 so a bus at 04.00 would get to Shenfield in time for the 04.38 departure to get into Liverpool St at 05.06 so I could stomach getting up 20 minutes earlier. Admittedly for people living down the line the bus would take longer but we should still be offered the option as some of us need to be in London early and not everyone drives and if they need to be in London early Greater Anglia are basically saying stuff you.
     
  16. JN114

    JN114 Established Member

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    Greater Anglia appear to be saying they cannot offer replacement road transport at a reasonable time that is quicker than waiting for the next train; those travelling from Southend itself have their tickets accepted on another operators services via a different route; which is still quicker than bus from Southend.
     
  17. Ianigsy

    Ianigsy Member

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    Until Class 91s were cleared to Skipton, it used to be quite common for the East Coast operator to start the through Skipton-Kings Cross train from Leeds with an electric set on a Monday morning if diversions off the ECML had left too many HSTs in the wrong place on Sunday night, with intending passengers directed to the Northern stoppers.
     
  18. Surreytraveller

    Surreytraveller Established Member

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    The strap line during engineering works always used to be 'travel earlier to maintain connections', but TOCs normally forget about first trains - buses would have to be provided earlier than the first trains. They quite often forget about last connections too, especially after midnight.
     
  19. Master29

    Master29 Established Member

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    They still have an obligation to get you to your destination as per terms.
     
  20. ForTheLoveOf

    ForTheLoveOf Established Member

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    The issue with this is - if they fail to abide by the obligation, what remedy will you have? If they cancel the first train of the day then I would suggest that the only remedy would likely be the appropriate amount of delay compensation. I don't think it would be possible to claim for the cost, e.g. of a taxi to ensure arrival at the contracted time - as the expense of such a taxi would be highly inappropriate and would certainly not represent reasonable mitigation of losses. It is quite a different situation to something like, for instance, the West Highland Line, where the cancellation of the first train of the day may mean such a substantial delay that making your own alternative transport arrangements could be seen as more reasonable.
     
  21. MichaelAMW

    MichaelAMW Member

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    Yes, but we're not talking about EVERY train having a replacement, rather that the TOC shouldn't just in effect cancel the first and, particularly, since you can get stranded, the last trains of the day.
     
  22. MPotter

    MPotter On Moderation

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    That is true. They should provide some means of alternative transport in place of these trains for passengers who would otherwise use them. However the first train will only need replacing if it is neccessary to do so.
     
  23. 12guard4

    12guard4 Member

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    Which they comply with by saying get on the next train
     
  24. 12guard4

    12guard4 Member

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    As its engineering works its not really greater anglia saying stuff you its more greater anglia saying Network Rail won't allow us to operate the service as per the timetable
     

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