Wednesday, February 15, 2012
I see that today, yet again, commuters on Southern Rail are facing serious and ongoing delays between Brighton and London.
This is therefore an opportune moment to offer some friendly advice to Network Rail re its "customer information".
Last week I had the misfortune of having to travel by rail from Brighton to London, on another day when commuters on the London/Brighton route were facing serious delays and cancellations.
One train, in the midst of the chaos, appeared to still be operating (the 11:34 Bedford train). At 11:29 the "customer information" showed "on time".
However, at 11:30 it showed "cancelled".
Clearly, given the ongoing disruption that day, Network Rail knew full well (before 11:30) that the train was not going to depart.
Why therefore did it wait until 11:30 to inform the hapless customers?
Lying to the customers does not endear Network Rail to its customers.
I then asked a member of staff as to when the next train to London would leave (the "information" board showed nothing other than "delay" or "cancelled").
He gave me an honest reply:
"I don't know".
At present Network Rail offers three specific messages wrt train departures:
- on time
May I suggest that they add a fourth?
"We are fucking clueless".
That at least is an honest message!