ScotRail Alliance performance showing improvement

Last updated: Friday, 11 January 2019

New figures published today show that punctuality on Scotland’s railway has improved for the second consecutive period.

Across Scotland, 84.2 per cent of ScotRail trains met the rail industry standard public performance measure, arriving at their destination within 4 minutes and 59 seconds of their timetabled arrival time, having called at all scheduled stations. This means the moving annual average – the rolling performance over the previous 12 months - stands at 87.3 per cent.

The figures show ScotRail’s punctuality is at its best since September, and the performance for period 10 (December 9 – January 5) is also better than the same period from the previous year.

There have been significant improvements made in a number of areas, including:

  • Ayr services have returned to their previous levels of performance following the full reopening of the line in December.
  • Changes to the timetable from 9 December 2018 have resulted in more on-time departures from Milngavie.
  • The Edinburgh to Glasgow route has seen its best performance since August.
  • More than 96 per cent of trains on the Paisley Canal route met their punctuality target.

The two incidents that had the most impact on the performance of the ScotRail Alliance – a partnership between Network Rail Scotland and ScotRail - for the period were:

  • Train crew issues at Edinburgh.
  • An overhead wire fault at Hyndland.

Despite the improvement in punctuality, there have been challenges in recent weeks, including:

  • Daily services being cancelled to allow drivers and conductors to be trained on new trains and new routes.
  • The late delivery of trains by suppliers, including Hitachi and Wabtec, meaning very limited time available for driver and conductor training.
  • An overtime and rest day working ban, now resolved, by the RMT trade union, which made the training problems worse.

Work continues to train conductors and drivers, and since 9 December 2018, 90 drivers and conductors have been trained – with more than 20 being trained every day throughout January and February to return service to acceptable levels.

Transport Scotland has requested a remedial plan from ScotRail, which will be submitted by 18 February – outlining the plan for improving performance.

ScotRail Alliance Managing Director Alex Hynes said:

“This has been a challenging time for Scotland’s railway. While we know that our performance has not been good enough, it is encouraging to see our punctuality continuing to improve across the country.

“Everyone at the ScotRail Alliance is working flat out to provide customers with the service they deserve. We are training more than 20 drivers and conductors every day, and this will deliver continual improvements in the coming weeks and months.”