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Author Topic: Railway Double Speak  (Read 2661 times)
grahame
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« on: August 11, 2017, 07:34:26 am »

"This is due to more trains than usual needing repairs at the same time." ... I have been asked what "usual" means, with the comment that it should be unusual for us to see this message ...
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Timmer
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« Reply #1 on: August 11, 2017, 07:46:37 am »

Plenty of them today with 43 listed. One can only hope that the next Great Western franchise includes new rolling stock for West services. All recently announced franchises have included new rolling stock but I am not holding my breath.
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grahame
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« Reply #2 on: August 11, 2017, 08:39:34 am »

I have a lot of sympathy with the GWR team who are trying to keep services running with rolling stock that was end-of-life  and has become rundown, rather than having other trains cascaded in.  Perhaps their only "mistake" was to believe what they were told about cascades, and I guess that even if they had their doubts, the way the rolling stock market works they couldn't do much in the way of contingency planning.

I wish I could find the same level of sympathy for those in the team who's role it is to provide staff to run trains.  Sunday, Wednesday and Thursday there weren't enough staff to run a full TransWilts service, and indeed Tuesday's the only day so far this week that both the 07:49 and 18:03 peak calls have been made at Melksham. Yes, of course there WILL be occasions that they're short of crew, but "occasions" means "occasional" ...
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« Reply #3 on: August 11, 2017, 09:26:45 am »

And this very morning, the 0600 BTM to BPW was cancelled, and the 0623 BPW to Penzance was cancelled, but replaced by 0635 BTM-PNZ, not much good for the 15, or so,  of us stuck at BPW!

At least this week, unlike last week, they arranged taxis!

And what was the reason last week ... no staff.

And this morning ... train failure.
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TaplowGreen
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« Reply #4 on: August 11, 2017, 09:34:12 am »

I have a lot of sympathy with the GWR team who are trying to keep services running with rolling stock that was end-of-life  and has become rundown, rather than having other trains cascaded in.  Perhaps their only "mistake" was to believe what they were told about cascades, and I guess that even if they had their doubts, the way the rolling stock market works they couldn't do much in the way of contingency planning.

I wish I could find the same level of sympathy for those in the team who's role it is to provide staff to run trains.  Sunday, Wednesday and Thursday there weren't enough staff to run a full TransWilts service, and indeed Tuesday's the only day so far this week that both the 07:49 and 18:03 peak calls have been made at Melksham. Yes, of course there WILL be occasions that they're short of crew, but "occasions" means "occasional" ...

"More trains than usual" needing repairs explicitly suggests that this is an uncommon scenario, whereas in reality, along with daily staff shortages causing cancellations and dreadful customer service, it's becoming the norm.

All indicators of an overall downward trajectory for GWR.
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SandTEngineer
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« Reply #5 on: August 11, 2017, 02:48:14 pm »

I think there is a small hint on other forums as to what is going on.  It looks like the major GWR maintenance depots are suffering a hemorage of key staff to Hitachi.  You can't blame them, only the DfT, for the way the whole new train contract is being handled.
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grahame
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« Reply #6 on: August 11, 2017, 03:39:21 pm »

I think there is a small hint on other forums as to what is going on.  It looks like the major GWR maintenance depots are suffering a hemorage of key staff to Hitachi.  You can't blame them, only the DfT, for the way the whole new train contract is being handled.

From what I've heard from very reliable sources, I could not deny that.   That is, though, not the whole story; trains which were going to naturally have major services as they moved between leases and TOCs (or indeed were being withdrawn with no new home) are all due for major maintenance if they're retained longer because stuff isn't being released for cascade.
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SandTEngineer
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« Reply #7 on: August 11, 2017, 06:11:05 pm »

I think there is a small hint on other forums as to what is going on.  It looks like the major GWR maintenance depots are suffering a hemorage of key staff to Hitachi.  You can't blame them, only the DfT, for the way the whole new train contract is being handled.

From what I've heard from very reliable sources, I could not deny that.   That is, though, not the whole story; trains which were going to naturally have major services as they moved between leases and TOCs (or indeed were being withdrawn with no new home) are all due for major maintenance if they're retained longer because stuff isn't being released for cascade.

...and there are tales of stock actually getting away for refurbishment, only for the contractor to find a large number of holes in the metalwork or in some cases, no metalwork at all.... Roll Eyes
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« Reply #8 on: August 11, 2017, 10:39:08 pm »

Never mind, a quick bit of work with a welder's torch and HST's could easily go on hammering up and down the GWML at 125mph for at least another 20 years...   Roll Eyes
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SandTEngineer
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« Reply #9 on: August 12, 2017, 12:35:00 pm »

There are stories circulating elsewhere that Landore depot is closing.
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« Reply #10 on: August 12, 2017, 01:19:59 pm »

Never mind, a quick bit of work with a welder's torch and HST's could easily go on hammering up and down the GWML at 125mph for at least another 20 years...   Roll Eyes

At what cost?  The Mk3 crash worthness is a whole coach body design unlike its BR predicessors which relied on a sole bar chaise.  Yes its posible to rebuild anything as the heritage railways show however the National network has to function at an economical cost and this means new builds as technology has moved on so the new builds will mean lower maintanace costs also if their design is right the new build will see 40 years front line service where as a refurbed Mk3 might see another 10 or 15.

There are stories circulating elsewhere that Landore depot is closing.

Laira was also supposed to close I belive it is now being down sized.  Landore going should not be a suprise a sad fact but just like its sibblings 81A and 82A perhaps its time as come to an end
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« Reply #11 on: August 12, 2017, 01:46:55 pm »

Never mind, a quick bit of work with a welder's torch and HST's could easily go on hammering up and down the GWML at 125mph for at least another 20 years...   Roll Eyes

At what cost?...

I was being a little sarcastic towards the 'HST's-can-go-on-forever' brigade.
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« Reply #12 on: August 12, 2017, 07:14:55 pm »

There are stories circulating elsewhere that Landore depot is closing.


Welllllll ... what is that huge new depot at Maliphant that you pass these days on the approach to Swansea?    Lots of knitting needles too ...
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« Reply #13 on: August 12, 2017, 08:13:55 pm »

There are stories circulating elsewhere that Landore depot is closing.


Welllllll ... what is that huge new depot at Maliphant that you pass these days on the approach to Swansea?    Lots of knitting needles too ...

Huge? It's just overnight parking for 8 of Mr Hitachi's new trains. What Volker Fitzpatrick say that they are making is:
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The depot in Maliphant, Swansea, is one of three depots selected by Hitachi to house its new fleet of long-distance intercity express trains that will operate on the Great Western Mainline (GWML). This depot will support new trains entering service in 2017 and provide cleaning and overnight parking for up to eight trains.

The Maliphant site is currently operational. The works are therefore being undertaken in phases to ensure there is no disruption to First Great Westernís services operating from the site.

The new facilities include an inspection building, train washing facilities, controlled emission toilet pump room and fuel farm pump room. In order to complete the works, existing track and stabling areas are being cleared;including workshop areas.

The existing mainline connections are being retained with new access tracks and stabling sidings being installed to suit the new depotís operations. The depot is also being future proofed through the installation of overhead line equipment along all the operational tracks.
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grahame
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« Reply #14 on: August 12, 2017, 08:40:56 pm »

Huge? It's just overnight parking for 8 of Mr Hitachi's new trains.

Sorry - "huge" is a relative word. 

Where I live a "huge" train is 4 carriages or more (150 002 is merely large) ... and a "huge" number of trains is four in play at a time - we usually have one, but should get up to 3 on a Saturday afternoons for "historic reasons".

So I stand by Maliphant looking huge to me!
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