ScotRail is reminding customers to check their journey before they travel as its timetable will revert back to the May 2022 level of service from tomorrow, Wednesday, 20 July, following members of the drivers’ union ASLEF voting to accept an improved pay offer.
This brings an end to the temporary timetable that has been in place since 23 May 2022.
Customers can check which services are running on the ScotRail website at scotrail.co.uk/timetables , or through the ScotRail app.
ScotRail’s temporary timetable had been introduced due to the impact of a significant number of drivers declining to make themselves available for overtime or rest day working, as they are entitled to do, during the pay dispute.
Like many train operators across Britain, ScotRail has relied on drivers working overtime or on their rest days. In 2019, ScotRail committed to employing more drivers to phase out the reliance on this practice, however, the pandemic meant that driver training was significantly delayed.
Without Covid, ScotRail would have around 130 extra qualified drivers by now. That would have significantly reduced our need for drivers to work overtime and rest days.
With progress made in pay negotiations, the union put the pay offer to members with a recommendation to accept. This recommendation led to members voting to accept, and ScotRail was notified of the results on Monday, 11 July.
Since then, ScotRail’s train planning staff have been working flat out to carry out the changes required for the near 700 services to be reintroduced. This has included scheduling the movement of trains to where they need to be, with rosters for general grade staff and schedules for drivers being altered.
The train operator said that it has also had to manage some increases in Covid-related absences as part of this, following the recent surge in infections across the country.
There is also the potential for knock-on disruption to some services tomorrow, as a result of the extreme heat on some routes over recent days, with potential damage to infrastructure and the possibility of trains being out of position.
David Simpson, ScotRail Service Delivery Director, said:
“I’d like to thank our customers for their patience through what has been a very challenging few months.
“I’d encourage customers to check their journey before they travel as our timetable returns to May 2022 levels, particularly given the disruption to services over recent days due to the extreme heat.
“We know how much people right across the country rely on rail travel, so we’re pleased to increase the number of services. Reaching such a positive resolution is a big step forward and everyone at ScotRail can now focus our efforts on providing the safest, greenest, and most reliable railway we can.”