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Author Topic: Shortage of train crews on Great Western Railway since September 2017 - ongoing discussion  (Read 419854 times)
TaplowGreen
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« Reply #1920 on: September 11, 2022, 09:52:56 »

.......Sunday morning and as at 0730 there are none of the usual thick red lines of numerous crew shortage cancellations on the map.........in fact none (yet) - intriguing.........

I was reading a BBC» (British Broadcasting Corporation - home page) article a couple of weeks ago ( https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-62638908 ) concerning a growing trend for people to do their contracted job and no more, and wonder if that's something we've been seeing in railway staffing circles.  Perhaps with the major news this week and the country thrown into new territory for all but the very oldest of us, people are taking a more pragmatic view and opting to staff rotas where there would have been shortages.

Possibly, or perhaps more people had signed up to work this Sunday to make a few extra quid in anticipation of the strike action which had originally been planned for the coming week?
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Timmer
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« Reply #1921 on: September 11, 2022, 10:04:17 »

Things not looking so rosy on the Cardiff-Portsmouth line with cancellations and short workings now appearing.
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grahame
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« Reply #1922 on: September 11, 2022, 10:06:24 »

I think the problem has shifted to the Wessex Main Line today?

Quote
15:08 Portsmouth Harbour to Cardiff Central due 18:41
16:08 Portsmouth Harbour to Cardiff Central due 19:44

16:08 Portsmouth Harbour to Cardiff Central due 19:44 will be cancelled.
This is due to a shortage of train crew.
Additional Information
We're sorry for any changes this brings to your travel plans today.

Quote
14:08 Portsmouth Harbour to Cardiff Central due 17:44
14:08 Portsmouth Harbour to Cardiff Central due 17:44 will be started from Westbury.

It will no longer call at Portsmouth Harbour, Portsmouth & Southsea, Fratton, Cosham, Fareham, Southampton Central, Romsey, Salisbury, Warminster and Dilton Marsh.
This is due to a shortage of train crew.
Additional Information
We're sorry for any changes this brings to your travel plans today.

So that's a gap from 13:08 to 17:08 in departures from Portsmouth Harbour, as far as Westbury.   And the additional information is "Sorry ...".

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« Reply #1923 on: September 11, 2022, 10:53:37 »

.......Sunday morning and as at 0730 there are none of the usual thick red lines of numerous crew shortage cancellations on the map.........in fact none (yet) - intriguing.........

I was reading a BBC» (British Broadcasting Corporation - home page) article a couple of weeks ago ( https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-62638908 ) concerning a growing trend for people to do their contracted job and no more, and wonder if that's something we've been seeing in railway staffing circles.  Perhaps with the major news this week and the country thrown into new territory for all but the very oldest of us, people are taking a more pragmatic view and opting to staff rotas where there would have been shortages.

Possibly, or perhaps more people had signed up to work this Sunday to make a few extra quid in anticipation of the strike action which had originally been planned for the coming week?

Or just the fact that the main summer holiday period has now ended.

One example of how that can make a difference is that any drivers who are on their block summer leave of two weeks have to have the Sunday off in the middle whether they would have been rostered to work or not, or would usually volunteer.
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« Reply #1924 on: September 11, 2022, 11:58:20 »

.......Sunday morning and as at 0730 there are none of the usual thick red lines of numerous crew shortage cancellations on the map.........in fact none (yet) - intriguing.........

Sadly, you wrote too soon.   Big gaps in Wessex Main Line services with successive cancellations, and gems like this:
Quote
11:03 Weymouth to Swindon due 13:29

11:03 Weymouth to Swindon due 13:29 will be terminated at Westbury.
It will no longer call at Trowbridge, Melksham, Chippenham and Swindon.
This is due to a shortage of train crew.
Will be formed of 2 coaches instead of 3.

Last Updated:11/09/2022 11:29
with the announcement of a train curtailed even after it has started its journey.
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« Reply #1925 on: September 11, 2022, 12:21:41 »

with the announcement of a train curtailed even after it has started its journey.

That can happen.  On a reasonably long journey there will often be crew changes en-route as you know.  If one of the relieving crew at, for example, Westbury is supposed to start their duty working that train, but phones in sick an hour or two before commencing duty, or their car breaks down on the way to work, or they have a family emergency, or a whole host of other reasons, then there may be no other option but to curtail the train.

The key of course is to have one or two standby drivers available...and that's often the case on weekdays or Sunday's in the depths of winter, but when other trains are already being cancelled because there aren't enough drivers/TM(resolve)'s, then there are obviously not going to be any standing by waiting in the wings.
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« Reply #1926 on: September 11, 2022, 12:54:48 »


Quote
14:08 Portsmouth Harbour to Cardiff Central due 17:44
14:08 Portsmouth Harbour to Cardiff Central due 17:44 will be started from Westbury.

It will no longer call at Portsmouth Harbour, Portsmouth & Southsea, Fratton, Cosham, Fareham, Southampton Central, Romsey, Salisbury, Warminster and Dilton Marsh.
This is due to a shortage of train crew.
Additional Information
We're sorry for any changes this brings to your travel plans today.

So that's a gap from 13:08 to 17:08 in departures from Portsmouth Harbour, as far as Westbury.   And the additional information is "Sorry ...".
The 14:08 not running at all now.

Problems the other way as well with the 10:25, 11:25 and 12:25 ex Cardiff terminating at Westbury. There is an additional train from Westbury to Salisbury at 13:03 on the path of the 11:25 to help the situation a bit.

The 18:25 and 19:25 ex Cardiff starting at Westbury.

Clearly a train crew shortage at Westbury today.
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TaplowGreen
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« Reply #1927 on: September 11, 2022, 15:10:19 »

Not just traincrew - from the GWR (Great Western Railway) Twitter feed;

⚠️Our Twitter and Whatsapp support will be unavailable until 0600 on Monday 12th September. We are really sorry for the inconvenience this may cause
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TaplowGreen
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« Reply #1928 on: September 11, 2022, 17:31:30 »

.....so much for this morning's optimistic start!

(Sorry Graham!)

Alterations to services between Swindon and Westbury

Due to a shortage of train crew between Swindon and Westbury the line is closed.

Train services running through these stations will be suspended between Swindon and Westbury. Melksham will not be served. Disruption is expected until the end of the day.

Customer Advice
We are currently requesting buses to replace cancelled trains on Melksham route. More information about this will be shared once we have it.
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Timmer
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« Reply #1929 on: September 11, 2022, 17:51:37 »

Not just traincrew - from the GWR (Great Western Railway) Twitter feed;

⚠️Our Twitter and Whatsapp support will be unavailable until 0600 on Monday 12th September. We are really sorry for the inconvenience this may cause

Happened yesterday too due to a shortage of Twitter Crew.
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« Reply #1930 on: December 18, 2022, 07:19:58 »

Looking at the above map covered in red and the long list of cancellations and alterations on Journeycheck, I wish everyone travelling by train today all the very best. What an absolute mess of a service.
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« Reply #1931 on: December 18, 2022, 08:12:40 »

Sundays are worked via Rest Day working/overtime. Thus many depot staff won’t be working owing to the overtime ban (January 2) - just as well there are no trains this timenext week, it would be carnage, regardless of date.
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grahame
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« Reply #1932 on: December 18, 2022, 08:30:44 »

Sundays are worked via Rest Day working/overtime. Thus many depot staff won’t be working owing to the overtime ban (January 2) - just as well there are no trains this timenext week, it would be carnage, regardless of date.

It should not be carnage, though.

It should be a full timetable that customers can rely on, all be it busy.  The rail employers, the unions and the government should be working (and should have worked) together to provide a robust service to a specification drawn up (a "published timetable") several months ahead.  A failure to do so is a collective failure on the part of all of those groups of professionals to provide the service their customers should be able to rely on.

I accept that there will be changes to the regular timetable, planned well in advance, for engineering works schedules to take part at the quietest time of year on some lines.  And I accept that weather related and other occasional events may lead to short term changes - be that icicles in Chipping Sodbury Tunnel, Swans on the line at Bath Spa, or a 1000 year event like floodwaters lapping the rails on Wharncliffe Viaduct.

Edit to correct typo

« Last Edit: December 18, 2022, 09:08:50 by grahame » Logged

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ChrisB
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« Reply #1933 on: December 18, 2022, 09:20:20 »

If you hadn’t noticed, there os industrial action going on every day until January 8.

The unions intention is to cause carnage. In places there will be carnage. You can’t support the staff in the dispute without also expecting carnage.

If you want proper carnage, see Chiltern’s offering today. Or don’t bother, they aren’t offering single train. To anywhere. You’re lucky.
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grahame
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« Reply #1934 on: December 18, 2022, 12:17:07 »

If you hadn’t noticed, there os industrial action going on every day until January 8.

The unions intention is to cause carnage. In places there will be carnage. You can’t support the staff in the dispute without also expecting carnage.

If you want proper carnage, see Chiltern’s offering today. Or don’t bother, they aren’t offering single train. To anywhere. You’re lucky.

Yeah, I think all members here had noticed.  The unions, the train operators and behind the scenes perhaps the government using the TOCs (Train Operating Company) as puppets continue to slug it out, placing the blame on each other.

At 10:42 this morning (Sunday 18th December 2022) from JourneyCheck:

Quote
Alterations to services on all routes

Due to industrial action:

Train services running across the whole Great Western Railway network will be revised. Disruption is expected until the end of the day.

Customer Advice

Trades unions have announced industrial action, including strike action and action short of strike, that will affect rail services on Sunday 18 December 2022, and from Saturday 24 December 2022 to Sunday 8 January 2023.

Following industrial action on Friday 16 & Saturday 17 December, train services will continue to be affected on Sunday 18 December. Trains will start later and there will be short-notice cancellations and alterations.

I do question what the cancellation rate would be like today if we did not have this ongoing dispute, and I suspect it there would be significant cancellations.    Last year at this time, there were cancellations due to lack of crew (just on the Swindon to Westbury service which I monitor) on 16th, 17th, 19th, 20th, 22nd and 23rd December.  Are GWR (Great Western Railway) using the industrial dispute as a convenient way of taking the focus off their own problems?
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