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‘Nobody took charge’, says major report on rail timetable chaos

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In a major review into the rail timetable chaos that impacted hundreds of passengers in May this year, the Office of Road and Rail (ORR) has identified operators Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) and Northern, Network Rail and the Department for Transport (DfT) for the chaos, saying their mistakes had led to the “collapse” of services.

GTR and Northern had cancelled up to 470 and 310 scheduled trains respectively each weekday during the disruption, which lasted several weeks.

The regulator’s 183-page report added: “The present industry arrangements do not support clarity of decision making: it was unclear who was responsible for what. Nobody took charge.”

The ORR chairman, Stephen Glaister, said: “Good intentions and over-optimism within the rail industry about its ability to recover missed deadlines left no time to uncover and fix problems. In the event the operators were overwhelmed. They had made insufficient provision to help people in the event that things went wrong.”




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