Management / Network Rail fined £2 million over missed punctuality targets

Network Rail fined £2 million over missed punctuality targets

Network Rail faces a £2 million fine following an investigation which found that the rail company had breached its licence and was performing “below expectations”.

Train delays

An investigation conducted by transport regulator the Office of Road and Rail showed that Network Rail’s trains were punctual an average of 86.9 per cent of the time, well below the company’s 92.5 per cent target.

Network Rail’s 2014-15 performance across several train lines was examined, including lines across Scotland, Govia Thameslink (GTR) and Southern.

It also found that almost half of significantly delayed and cancelled journeys were operated by GTR and Southern, and accounted for a third of punctuality delays.

The investigation highlighted severe delays at London Bridge station in December and long-running delays to Scottish lines which have seen little improvement over the last few years.

The ORR concluded that the root causes of the delays were timetables constructed on incorrect data and overly optimistic assessments of the impact that the new timetables would have on performance.

“The penalty sends a clear message to the Network Rail Board,” said ORR chief executive Richard Price.

“The scale of the delays suffered by passengers was central to our decision to fine – a decision we did not take lightly.

“Network Rail must urgently rectify these errors and deliver the reliability of services that passengers have paid for.”

Network Rail can opt to instead offer customer compensation rather than paying the ORR’s fine.

Photo © SarahTz (CC BY 2.0). Cropped.

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