Home London News Exclusive: Londoners lose 15 million hours to Tube delays in 2013

Exclusive: Londoners lose 15 million hours to Tube delays in 2013

by LLB Editor
7th Oct 13 4:46 pm

Central Line commuters suffer maximum delays

Londoners have lost almost 15 million hours – the equivalent of some 1,593 years – because of Tube delays this year.

The new figures come from a Freedom of Information request by LondonlovesBusiness.com.

We can also reveal that between 1 January 2013 and 13 September 2013, the Central Line was the worst Tube line for delays, racking up almost 2.4 million hours in “lost customer hours”.

At number two was the Jubilee line with over 2.3 million hours in lost customer hours.

Story continues below chart…


Lost customer hours



















Waterloo and City




The Victoria line and District line came in at the third and the fourth place for worst Tube lines, with over 1.7 million hours and 1.6 million hours wasted respectively.

London Underground calculates Tube “lost customer hours” (LCH) taking into account the total additional journey time as a result of delays that lasted more than two minutes. Delays at a busy location or during peak hours results in more lost customer hours as more customers are affected.

Hence an incident at Oxford Circus during a weekday peak will give rise to a much higher LCH value than an incident of the same duration in Zone 6 on a Sunday morning as the delay is multiplied by the estimated number of passengers.

The number of Tube delays have been reduced by 37% since 2008/09, and 56% since 2003.

Last year, London mayor Boris Johnson promised to cut tube delays by 30% by 2015 and reduce annual lost customer hours by a further 8.7 million hours.

London Underground wrote in the Freedom of Information request to us: “The continuing trend of long-term improvement follows the success of the London Underground Reliability Programme. London Underground continues to implement this programme to meet the Mayor’s commitment of reducing delays by a further 30% by 2015.”

Jonathan Isaby, political director of the TaxPayers’ Alliance, said: “Huge damage is done to the economy by the time people waste on Tube platforms or stationary trains due to delays. The millions of hours lost to Tube delays every year are not only causing inconvenience and hassle to those directly affected, but end up hitting all taxpayers.

“It is reassuring that delays have been reduced in recent years, but London Underground bosses cannot afford to be complacent and must work to reduce the figure further.”

Caroline Pidgeon AM, leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group, said: “The one thing that is definitely on schedule is that London will see 20 million lost customer hours on the Tube by the end of the year.

“While this figure might be an improvement on the appalling previous years’ figures it is still a staggering waste of time for hard pressed passengers.

“The Mayor should put real effort into reducing the level of delays on the Tube rather than boasting about its current performance.”

Leave a Comment


Sign up to our daily news alerts

[ms-form id=1]