Requesting Passenger to take London Night Bus when last train is cancelled - Violate NRCOT?

hkstudent

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London does have an extensive night bus network despite passengers travelling long-distance may require a transfer between buses and have a long wait during the transfer (up to 30 minutes).

There were couple of last trains were cancelled at London Cannon Street on 9th June night, and station announcements at 23:45 announced all trains are to be cancelled, and invite passengers to walk to London Bridge Station to try to catch the last services.

However, as there are distances, I was unable to make it to catch the last train to Welling. Network Rail staff (in London Bridge) barred me to enter the platform, and told me that they are unable to arrange alternative transport as they are not railway company (fair enough), but also mentioned all Southeastern platform staffs are off at 23:00.

I went to the ticket office and asked for help, (and asked carefully whether he is a Southeastern staff), and he directed me to platform 6 (Southeastern) side to see if buses are arranged. Obviously, when reaching the ground floor landing of escalator to platform 6, was barred by the same Network Rail London Bridge staff again, and was asked to go back to the ticket office again.

I requested a taxi to be arranged but he mentioned he cannot do that and asked me to take the night bus from New Cross Gate. But since I am not familiar with New Cross area (and quite fear of the dodgy situation there, while also being an ethnic minority which has even more risk), I stressed about railway company is required by rules to arrange alternative travel, but no positive result (though he was kind enough to show me the bus stop map of New Cross Gate area, but that's not very useful in my case).

Is Southeastern in the wrong this time in asking passengers to take the London night bus instead of arranging a taxi? Or, are most Londoners are deprived of not eligible in getting alternative transport to be arranged by railway company at the railway company's expense?

Also, seems Network Rail's one-uniform approach at major London stations is not working well, as staff of each company still not be able to cover their counterpart's duty.
 
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yorkie

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Did you have a ticket or were you using PAYG?

Was ticket acceptance in place on the buses?
 

hkstudent

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Did you have a ticket or were you using PAYG?

Was ticket acceptance in place on the buses?
As it is in London, I was planning to use Oyster Card PAYG.
No announcement were made at London Bridge Station for any alternative travel or contingency plan.
Obviously, buses don't care about any NR orange ticket other than London Travelcard.
 

island

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Unfortunately, when using PAYG you do not have a contract with the railway until when you touch in (and they are not required to let you touch in thereby forming a contract).

As such they were not under an obligation to pay for a taxi for you. If you had a paper ticket you might have had more success.

Electrical supply issues meant that the last successful departure on Wednesday night from Cannon Street to London Bridge was the 2302. It’s easy to say with hindsight but seeing the disruption I would have been tempted to make my way on foot to London Bridge at an earlier point thereby making the 0002 to Dartford via Bexleyheath.

The advice to take a night bus was the best available in the circumstances, although I would have been likely to advise travelling to Charing Cross/Blackfriars/Southwark station rather than New Cross Gate to pick up the N89, on safety grounds.

If you eventually did take a taxi you could always contact Southeastern customer services to see if they will pay a contribution to the cost as a gesture of goodwill.
 

Wolfie

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Unfortunately, when using PAYG you do not have a contract with the railway until when you touch in (and they are not required to let you touch in thereby forming a contract).

As such they were not under an obligation to pay for a taxi for you. If you had a paper ticket you might have had more success.

Electrical supply issues meant that the last successful departure on Wednesday night from Cannon Street to London Bridge was the 2302. It’s easy to say with hindsight but seeing the disruption I would have been tempted to make my way on foot to London Bridge at an earlier point thereby making the 0002 to Dartford via Bexleyheath.

The advice to take a night bus was the best available in the circumstances, although I would have been likely to advise travelling to Charing Cross/Blackfriars/Southwark station rather than New Cross Gate to pick up the N89, on safety grounds.

If you eventually did take a taxi you could always contact Southeastern customer services to see if they will pay a contribution to the cost as a gesture of goodwill.
You are almost certainly correct with respect to PAYG. What is perhaps less clear is the situation where you already have a Travelcard covering the proposed journey.
 

island

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In the case of a Travelcard it is a similar outcome in my view; pax takes alternative services including buses (which the Travelcard is valid for) and claims DelayRepay based on their arrival time compared to their intended journey.
 

Wolfie

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In the case of a Travelcard it is a similar outcome in my view; pax takes alternative services including buses (which the Travelcard is valid for) and claims DelayRepay based on their arrival time compared to their intended journey.
Interesting. So your take is that if a passenger buys at their own expense/additional cost a ticket with greater flexibility then the railway can then use that greater flexibility to minimise consequential costs arising from its own failings. Hardly passenger friendly to put it politely.

I'm not even sure how Delay Repay is calculated when a Travelcard is being used. Is it based on the cost of the specific journey?
 

hkstudent

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Interesting. So your take is that if a passenger buys at their own expense/additional cost a ticket with greater flexibility then the railway can then use that greater flexibility to minimise consequential costs arising from its own failings. Hardly passenger friendly to put it politely.

I'm not even sure how Delay Repay is calculated when a Travelcard is being used. Is it based on the cost of the specific journey?
Then that's violates the intention of introducing PAYG, to provide better flexibility to travelling.
If PAYG has less consumer protection, that's an issue.
 

Haywain

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Then that's violates the intention of introducing PAYG, to provide better flexibility to travelling.
If PAYG has less consumer protection, that's an issue.
It has the same level of consumer protection as anything else that you haven’t paid for.
 

hkstudent

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It has the same level of consumer protection as anything else that you haven’t paid for.
Issue is: TfL claimed Daily capping is the same effect as day travelcard.
But at the end, it isn't in terms of consumer protection.

For the last train of the day, you usually have reached the daily capping of the day and you don't need to pay any extra, just like a day travelcard.
Oyster Card does have show the intention to travel, but hard to prove.
 

yorkie

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I don't think it is any different with a Travelcard or PAYG. An alternative option was available and compensation can be claimed.

If you held a single or return ticket that would not (normally) be valid on buses, then I would expect ticket acceptance to be in place. I do not understand what "buses don't care about any NR orange ticket" means but it is not unheard of for ticket acceptance to be in place.

A train company would not be able to turn away a valid ticket holder without providing them with another option but I do not think anyone can compel them to provide a taxi instead of allowing travel on a bus.
 

hkstudent

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I don't think it is any different with a Travelcard or PAYG. An alternative option was available and compensation can be claimed.

If you held a single or return ticket that would not (normally) be valid on buses, then I would expect ticket acceptance to be in place. I do not understand what "buses don't care about any NR orange ticket" means but it is not unheard of for ticket acceptance to be in place.

A train company would not be able to turn away a valid ticket holder without providing them with another option but I do not think anyone can compel them to provide a taxi instead of allowing travel on a bus.
TfL bus drivers are trained not to accept other tickets and only accept TfL bus pass, Travelcard, TOC Smartcard with Travelcard loaded or oyster card / contactless payment unless there is a prior notice of planned engineering work.
At night time, if a train company would need a ticket acceptance on the bus, the TOC will need to ring TfL headquarter for ticket acceptance which there are no one to handle such request at night. And even if the call went through, the order needs to go to the depot, and then to announce to all bus drivers through the radio system. I think the whole process may need at least an hour.
The only feasible way would be for station staff to hail the bus for the customer and pay for the customer using a company card, but it may not work if the customer requires a transfer between buses. And for this case, since New Cross Gate is staffed by London Overground, the staff there may not entertain Southeastern's request for assistance. (Given the poor track record of London Overground be unable to provide alternative transport or assistance to stranded customers as well)
 

jumble

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London does have an extensive night bus network despite passengers travelling long-distance may require a transfer between buses and have a long wait during the transfer (up to 30 minutes).

There were couple of last trains were cancelled at London Cannon Street on 9th June night, and station announcements at 23:45 announced all trains are to be cancelled, and invite passengers to walk to London Bridge Station to try to catch the last services.

However, as there are distances, I was unable to make it to catch the last train to Welling. Network Rail staff (in London Bridge) barred me to enter the platform, and told me that they are unable to arrange alternative transport as they are not railway company (fair enough), but also mentioned all Southeastern platform staffs are off at 23:00.

I went to the ticket office and asked for help, (and asked carefully whether he is a Southeastern staff), and he directed me to platform 6 (Southeastern) side to see if buses are arranged. Obviously, when reaching the ground floor landing of escalator to platform 6, was barred by the same Network Rail London Bridge staff again, and was asked to go back to the ticket office again.

I requested a taxi to be arranged but he mentioned he cannot do that and asked me to take the night bus from New Cross Gate. But since I am not familiar with New Cross area (and quite fear of the dodgy situation there, while also being an ethnic minority which has even more risk), I stressed about railway company is required by rules to arrange alternative travel, but no positive result (though he was kind enough to show me the bus stop map of New Cross Gate area, but that's not very useful in my case).

Is Southeastern in the wrong this time in asking passengers to take the London night bus instead of arranging a taxi? Or, are most Londoners are deprived of not eligible in getting alternative transport to be arranged by railway company at the railway company's expense?

Also, seems Network Rail's one-uniform approach at major London stations is not working well, as staff of each company still not be able to cover their counterpart's duty.
Should a Rail company who have arranged Rail Replacement busses have to provide a Taxi if a customer claims to a phobia of busses or decides they don't want to meet dodgy people on the bus ?
Unfortunately being harsh if you don't feel safe that is your problem and not Southeasterns
 

hkstudent

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Should a Rail company who have arranged Rail Replacement busses have to provide a Taxi if a customer claims to a phobia of busses or decides they don't want to meet dodgy people on the bus ?
Unfortunately being harsh if you don't feel safe that is your problem and not Southeasterns
Well, Southeastern has to arrange a direct bus or taxi or whatever they can do, from London Bridge to the final destination, or staff be guiding customers from station to take the alternative transport if the customer is unfamiliar with the area.
It is not to be dumping a passenger to a mid-way station and offer no further assistance.

Also, sending a single customer to a deprived area at midnight without staff accompany fails the duty of care and may put customer at risk.
 

Bletchleyite

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Also, sending a single customer to a deprived area at midnight without staff accompany fails the duty of care and may put customer at risk.

New Cross certainly isn't posh, but I think you may be slightly overtalking this, and isn't getting off a night bus just the same as getting off a train and walking out of the station? It's a shame as an ethnic minority you feel this puts you at greater risk, as it's always struck me that London is one of the few places in the world where anyone of any ethnicity can feel at home (maybe New York is the other one?) - but I'm a white male so it's hard for me to properly appreciate that.

I don't see a sense in putting taxis on if there is a perfectly usable bus alternative. It's not really much different from it being a RRB. Part of the idea of an integrated urban transport network is that any mode can, where there is overlap, substitute for any other without needing to do anything specific to enable that.
 

skyhigh

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Seeing as you mention 'violating the NRCOT', the NRCOT simply says:
28.2. Where disruption prevents you from completing the journey for which your Ticket is valid and is being used, any Train Company will, where it reasonably can, provide you with alternative means of travel to your destination, or if necessary, provide overnight accommodation for you.
The type of 'alternative means of travel' isn't specified. While normally in disruption they would provide a rail replacement bus, or a taxi, I'd suggest that they don't have to provide a taxi - if there's a bus service that departs from or near to the station and gets you to your destination, they are fully entitled to put you on it (subject to them paying for your ticket or arranging ticket acceptance of course).

At night time, if a train company would need a ticket acceptance on the bus, the TOC will need to ring TfL headquarter for ticket acceptance which there are no one to handle such request at night. And even if the call went through, the order needs to go to the depot, and then to announce to all bus drivers through the radio system. I think the whole process may need at least an hour.
The bit in bold - are you certain about that...? I'm fairly certain there's a duty controller available 24hrs to arrange things such as this, and I doubt it would take an hour.
 

Bletchleyite

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At night time, if a train company would need a ticket acceptance on the bus, the TOC will need to ring TfL headquarter for ticket acceptance which there are no one to handle such request at night

Assuming anyone needs it. The vast majority of people using that sort of local train late at night in London will be using Oyster or contactless. And if not making a connectional journey, the bus will save them money.
 

Wolfie

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Then that's violates the intention of introducing PAYG, to provide better flexibility to travelling.
If PAYG has less consumer protection, that's an issue.
Island is likely legally correct with respect to PAYG. A contract involves offer, acceptance, delivery and payment. Legally if you haven't touched in you haven't accepted. It would be an absolute legal minefield to, as you seem to want, argue that having a PAYG Oyster in your wallet with credit on it means that a contract exists.
 

peteb

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So if customer intending to travel on Oyster PAYG had simply purchased a single to Welling and shown that to ticket office I infer that a taxi or other means of transport would have been provided? Instead of advice to travel by bus (on which Oyster valid). Or are ticket machines or phone purchase options switched off if trains cancelled?
 

Bletchleyite

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So if customer intending to travel on Oyster PAYG had simply purchased a single to Welling and shown that to ticket office I infer that a taxi or other means of transport would have been provided? Instead of advice to travel by bus (on which Oyster valid).

If it was purchased before the train was cancelled, yes. However, I wouldn't bet on that for late evening services, and it's always prudent to have the means of sorting an alternative yourself late at night if needs be.
 

yorkie

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TfL bus drivers are trained not to accept other tickets and only accept TfL bus pass, Travelcard, TOC Smartcard with Travelcard loaded or oyster card / contactless payment unless there is a prior notice of planned engineering work.
At night time, if a train company would need a ticket acceptance on the bus, the TOC will need to ring TfL headquarter for ticket acceptance which there are no one to handle such request at night. And even if the call went through, the order needs to go to the depot, and then to announce to all bus drivers through the radio system. I think the whole process may need at least an hour.
The only feasible way would be for station staff to hail the bus for the customer and pay for the customer using a company card, but it may not work if the customer requires a transfer between buses. And for this case, since New Cross Gate is staffed by London Overground, the staff there may not entertain Southeastern's request for assistance. (Given the poor track record of London Overground be unable to provide alternative transport or assistance to stranded customers as well)
This sounds theoretical and unrelated to the matter in hand.

If this happens to you, please do make a new thread with the details and we will advise accordingly.

It sounds more like you did not want to change from a train to a bus at New Cross because you felt it would be unsafe in that area and wanted a direct taxi to be provided. I do not think that is reasonable, so any such taxi would need to be at your own expense.
 

island

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Well, Southeastern has to arrange a direct bus or taxi or whatever they can do, from London Bridge to the final destination, or staff be guiding customers from station to take the alternative transport if the customer is unfamiliar with the area.
It is not to be dumping a passenger to a mid-way station and offer no further assistance.
Whilst you may feel that they should be required to do this, it is not an actual requirement that they provide a direct journey. (And your original journey would not have been direct even if everything had gone to plan.)
 

Wolfie

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Whilst you may feel that they should be required to do this, it is not an actual requirement that they provide a direct journey. (And your original journey would not have been direct even if everything had gone to plan.)
Indeed so. As you say not all rail journeys are direct, so why should it be assumed that any replacements will be so?
 

island

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Interesting. So your take is that if a passenger buys at their own expense/additional cost a ticket with greater flexibility then the railway can then use that greater flexibility to minimise consequential costs arising from its own failings. Hardly passenger friendly to put it politely.
I don’t think it is especially passenger unfriendly either; it seems no different to (say) two passengers wanting to travel from Reading to Clapham Junction one with an any permitted ticket and the other with Not Via London, but they find the SWR service suspended for whatever reason and end up on GWR instead at no extra cost. The passenger with the any permitted ticket will then get a higher amount of DelayRepay.
I'm not even sure how Delay Repay is calculated when a Travelcard is being used. Is it based on the cost of the specific journey?
I have never had cause to make such a claim so I cannot say.
 

Bletchleyite

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I'm not even sure how Delay Repay is calculated when a Travelcard is being used. Is it based on the cost of the specific journey?

In my experience (I've made a number of claims to both GTR and WMT in respect of one day Travelcards) it's just been based on it being treated as a return ticket, ignoring incidental intra-London journeys, as that's how the vast majority of people actually use them.

If the delay was on one of those incidental journeys I have no idea :)
 

MotCO

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Presumably, if the OP had started his journey, say, at Kingston, and had to cross London to Canon Street to resume his journey to Welling, then a taxi or RRB should be provided. I sense that as the OP had not started his journey, no alternative transport had to be provided.
 

Haywain

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Presumably, if the OP had started his journey, say, at Kingston, and had to cross London to Canon Street to resume his journey to Welling, then a taxi or RRB should be provided. I sense that as the OP had not started his journey, no alternative transport had to be provided.
No, alternative transport was provided. It’s not a case of having to be the sort of alternative that you happen to want.
 

jumble

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Well, Southeastern has to arrange a direct bus or taxi or whatever they can do, from London Bridge to the final destination, or staff be guiding customers from station to take the alternative transport if the customer is unfamiliar with the area.
It is not to be dumping a passenger to a mid-way station and offer no further assistance.

Also, sending a single customer to a deprived area at midnight without staff accompany fails the duty of care and may put customer at risk.
Perhaps look at this from South Eastern's perspective
If they supplied taxis to everyone it would cost them a great deal of money
If you were running a business and your decisions affected your bottom line what would you do?
 

mmh

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Perhaps look at this from South Eastern's perspective
If they supplied taxis to everyone it would cost them a great deal of money
If you were running a business and your decisions affected your bottom line what would you do?

I think there's some rose-tinted thinking when it comes to "rail replacement taxis." The reality is that when it does happen, a porter won't be hailing you your own person cab outside the station. More likely, you may have to wait some hours while people who are higher priority (those with children, the elderly and so on) are marshalled into the first cars to arrive. If you're travelling alone, you'll likely have to share. If you are the only passenger wanting your station, you may go on a detour to stop at (an)other station(s) on the way.

It might seem counter-intuitive, but I wouldn't be surprised if arranging taxi transport at a London terminus is rather difficult too.
 

island

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Presumably, if the OP had started his journey, say, at Kingston, and had to cross London to Canon Street to resume his journey to Welling, then a taxi or RRB should be provided. I sense that as the OP had not started his journey, no alternative transport had to be provided.
An alternative bus option was offered.
 

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