What is up with Virgin Trains' disabled toilets?

Discussion in 'Traction & Rolling Stock' started by ryan125hst, 28 Apr 2015.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. ryan125hst

    ryan125hst Established Member

    Messages:
    1,051
    Joined:
    2 Jun 2011
    Location:
    Retford
    I've been looking at the journey check pages of all the operators that have them and one thing I've noticed is that Virgin Trains' disabled toilets seem to be having a few issues.

    This isn't the worst I've seen it however as a day or two ago three trains had this problem and two toilets we mentioned (the one in first class was OOU as well). I think a forth train had one disabled toilet OOU. The questions is, what is going on with them? It's not unusual for train toilets to be locked out of use, particularly on trains with retention tanks, but this issue only seems to be effecting the disabled toilets on the Pendolino's judging by the coach numbers. I've not seen any mention of standard toilets.

    Does anyone know what's going on?


    It's going off topic a bit, but I might as well post a couple more as they are interesting:

    It always amuses me when journey check tells passengers that the train will be longer than it should, particularly when it means the train is over double the length it should be. I'm guessing in this case they do it because of seat reservations (note that the train is also in reverse formation), but it's even more amusing when they say that, for example, a Northern Rail service is formed of 3 coaches instead of 2. :lol:
    It's interesting in the case below that they have listed the unit numbers. Would many passengers understand this or even know where to look?
     
  2. dk1

    dk1 Established Member

    Messages:
    4,964
    Joined:
    2 Oct 2009
    Location:
    East Anglia
    Automatic toilet doors? Another pain in the neck thing to go wrong unlike good old fashioned & reliable hinged doors with a basic lock.
     
  3. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

    Messages:
    20,832
    Joined:
    20 Oct 2014
    Location:
    Up and down the south WCML (mostly)
    It can be useful to those who were planning on taking a different service, which is perhaps short-formed, to know which to switch to. Or if one is cancelled, it's useful to know the next one is longer so won't leave people behind.
     
  4. CC 72100

    CC 72100 Established Member

    Messages:
    2,979
    Joined:
    23 Jan 2012
    I wonder if the latter notice (the one with the unit numbers) is a message that has been lifted straight from internal communications without removing some of the details before it goes on Journeycheck? I've seen it reported on here in the past, although that time with EC (as it was).
     
  5. theageofthetra

    theageofthetra Established Member

    Messages:
    2,290
    Joined:
    27 May 2012
    Why do we have those ridiculous electric doors which can go wrong. I have just got off a almost new (presumably DDA/EU compliant) Bombardier SNCF unit from Basel to Mulhouse and that had a normal curved 'accesible' type toilet door.It resembled inside a compliant one, EXCEPT the door was manual, with a handle low enough for a wheelchair user. Why don't we have these?
     
  6. ryan125hst

    ryan125hst Established Member

    Messages:
    1,051
    Joined:
    2 Jun 2011
    Location:
    Retford
    It probably is! If that's the case, it's obviously the case that one failed and now they are all going to fail! :lol:

    It's probably in some standard somewhere that says it needs to be electric. I wonder if it's possible to design an electric door with back up handles? That's probably over-complicating things though and making it even more likely to fail!
    --- old post above --- --- new post below ---
    It probably is, and the case when this happened before with East Coast was posted by me :) Believe it or not, I notice one on VTEC today as well saying that the DVT was locked out of use so customers with cycle reservations need to be directed to another service. The thing was, the whole notice was in capitals! :lol:
     
  7. Domh245

    Domh245 Established Member

    Messages:
    2,918
    Joined:
    6 Apr 2013
    Location:
    Nottingham
    Alternatively, the toilets might be out of use because the CET tanks have become full for one reason or another, and so the toilet has declared itself out of use. At that time of the evening, it is entirely feasibly, especially if there has been a lot of traffic during the day or if it wasn't tanked the previous night. Might be a bit of a clue to try and avoid that coach as well if possible because if the CET tank is full, well, the smell might be worse than usual!
     
  8. Aldaniti

    Aldaniti Member

    Messages:
    668
    Joined:
    13 Jun 2009
    Problem is, quite often these toilets will be out of service on early morning trains, immediately after they are supposed to have been serviced. It's a poor state of affairs but one that I have come to expect from Virgin Trains.
     
  9. physics34

    physics34 Established Member

    Messages:
    2,651
    Joined:
    1 Dec 2013
    How many toilets on a pendolino? 6? Been on a packed one once that must have had 4 of them out of use. Once again a modern unit that has less/worse facilities than previous stock on the route.... (Didnt mk2/3s have a loo per coach?)
     
    Last edited: 29 Apr 2015
  10. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

    Messages:
    20,832
    Joined:
    20 Oct 2014
    Location:
    Up and down the south WCML (mostly)
    2 per coach. Though half of them would often be broken.
     
  11. physics34

    physics34 Established Member

    Messages:
    2,651
    Joined:
    1 Dec 2013
    Exactly. As usual we have overkill over here on our trains.
     
  12. CyrusWuff

    CyrusWuff Established Member

    Messages:
    1,844
    Joined:
    20 May 2013
    Wouldn't surprise me, given the app used to post messages to JourneyCheck has three "Additional Information" type fields, one of which is for Internal Info and doesn't get published.
     
  13. Pigeon

    Pigeon Member

    Messages:
    133
    Joined:
    8 Apr 2015
    Either they were designed without any thought, on the basis that a disabled person "won't be able to use a handle" without considering that if they are that disabled they won't be able to haul themselves from their wheelchair onto the toilet either so the question doesn't arise, or some idiot thought it was "modern" and therefore "better" without bothering to verify the truth of that assumption, as all too often happens...

    Not only do the electric doors go wrong, they are booby-trapped. With a normal door it is dead obvious how to lock it and also dead obvious whether you've succeeded. With these fancy rubbish doors neither of these things are true. They then add insult to injury, as it were, by refusing to respond to the controls until they have swung fully open. I have been both the person who unwittingly opens the door only to find someone already in residence and then can't instantly shut it again, and the person who is revealed in mid-flow to an entire carriage full of people. I'm not sure which is more embarrassing, but I am sure that the person who designed a system that encourages such misadventures ought to be very embarrassed indeed at having done such a bad job.
     
  14. physics34

    physics34 Established Member

    Messages:
    2,651
    Joined:
    1 Dec 2013

    Spot on. Who designs this stuff? The incompetence angers me.
     
  15. Aldaniti

    Aldaniti Member

    Messages:
    668
    Joined:
    13 Jun 2009
    On the subject of Virgin Trains lavatories, has anyone ever managed to extract the paper from the dispenser without shredding their fingers? ;) Bloody awful things, always try to go at the station before having to get on a Virgin Train. Mk3 lavatory provision was infinitely better - and you didn't have some cretin speaking through a loudspeaker as you were trying to go. Good old British Rail, missed more and more by me as time goes by.
     
  16. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

    Messages:
    20,832
    Joined:
    20 Oct 2014
    Location:
    Up and down the south WCML (mostly)
    You've got vandals to blame for that. If people could be trusted not to put the whole roll down, we could have conventional bog rolls.
     
  17. Aldaniti

    Aldaniti Member

    Messages:
    668
    Joined:
    13 Jun 2009
    Your serious as well aren't you. ;) I think Virgin's dispensers must be by far the worst I've ever encountered. Perhaps vandals only exist on Virgin Trains? Although I confess, I haven't seen an obvious one sat in First Class :lol:
     
  18. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

    Messages:
    20,832
    Joined:
    20 Oct 2014
    Location:
    Up and down the south WCML (mostly)
    You've not travelled LM off peak then...First Class is exclusively for fare dodgers... :(
     
  19. Aldaniti

    Aldaniti Member

    Messages:
    668
    Joined:
    13 Jun 2009
    What is the world coming to eh? Perhaps I should take my own roll of 4-ply when travelling Virgin in future, just in case... :lol:
     
  20. 33056

    33056 Established Member

    Messages:
    2,283
    Joined:
    12 Nov 2007
    Location:
    On a train somewhere in Europe
    You'll get the problem with any of the dispensers loaded with sheets of paper, it all depends on which way round the paper is placed. If loaded correctly, it should come out easily sheet by sheet, if put in "back to front" it is nigh-on impossible to get out without shredding it!
     
  21. cjmillsnun

    cjmillsnun Established Member

    Messages:
    2,598
    Joined:
    13 Feb 2011
    When I was travelling on Mk2s and Mk3s regularly on the WCML I very rarely came across an out of use toilet.
     
  22. Boodiggy

    Boodiggy Member

    Messages:
    176
    Joined:
    8 Nov 2012
    Location:
    MK
    All of the above are messages sent out by VT control.
    It will go to all on the distribution list but will aid the TMs and station staff. They will need to know this so passengers including disabled ones are in the right place when the train arrives at a station.
    They send out various messages including units running non tilt, units in reverse
    formation, toilets, additional stops, diversions and cancellations and many other bits. Some stuff will go to internal staff only and not show on Journey Check.
     
  23. physics34

    physics34 Established Member

    Messages:
    2,651
    Joined:
    1 Dec 2013
    was gonna say that myself
     
  24. ryan125hst

    ryan125hst Established Member

    Messages:
    1,051
    Joined:
    2 Jun 2011
    Location:
    Retford
    It's only one toilet per coach, and two carriages don't have toilets (the one with the shop and the kitchen) meaning 7 toilets on a 9 car Pendolino and 9 toilets on an 11 car Pendolino.

    http://www.virgintrains.co.uk/assets/pdf/global/seating-plan.pdf
     
  25. cjmillsnun

    cjmillsnun Established Member

    Messages:
    2,598
    Joined:
    13 Feb 2011
    He was referring to Mk2s and Mk3s... Hence the past tense when referring to the toilets being broken.
     
  26. ryan125hst

    ryan125hst Established Member

    Messages:
    1,051
    Joined:
    2 Jun 2011
    Location:
    Retford
    Oh no! I've reread the post now including the quote and see what you mean. It certainly helps to read the whole thing doesn't it! :oops:

    My apologies Neil
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page