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Author Topic: Defensive scheduling  (Read 1811 times)
grahame
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« Reply #15 on: June 30, 2018, 08:47:05 am »

Alas - a further example this morning ... or rather an example of what can go wrong if you rely on a train running and more or less to schedule.  06:49 Carlisle to Euston cancelled due to lack of train crew ... I had planned 10:15 London arrival, 11:30 from Paddington for the Melksham connection at Chippenham to a 2 p.m. Trowbridge meeting.  Oops.  Ticketed on return halves of ticket ... Carlisle to London, then from Paddington out.

Shortage of train crew seems to be increasingly systemic, not limited to GWR land, or even to the headline TOCS of Northern, Southern and (our own next of the woods) Western.  Perhaps it is time to ask if the system needs amendment - perhaps to avoid the temptation to TOCs to be quite as leanly staffed as they are?   I am fully aware of the headline that says that GWR have more drivers than even before.  But that's not to say they have enough available, nor does the headline cover maintenance staff or train managers.

P.S. I do have a fallback  Grin and should be on time for the meeting.
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Western Pathfinder
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« Reply #16 on: June 30, 2018, 09:26:32 am »

Alas - a further example this morning ... or rather an example of what can go wrong if you rely on a train running and more or less to schedule.  06:49 Carlisle to Euston cancelled due to lack of train crew ... I had planned 10:15 London arrival, 11:30 from Paddington for the Melksham connection at Chippenham to a 2 p.m. Trowbridge meeting.  Oops.  Ticketed on return halves of ticket ... Carlisle to London, then from Paddington out.

Shortage of train crew seems to be increasingly systemic, not limited to GWR land, or even to the headline TOCS of Northern, Southern and (our own next of the woods) Western.  Perhaps it is time to ask if the system needs amendment - perhaps to avoid the temptation to TOCs to be quite as leanly staffed as they are?   I am fully aware of the headline that says that GWR have more drivers than even before.  But that's not to say they have enough available, nor does the headline cover maintenance staff or train managers.

P.S. I do have a fallback  Grin and should be on time for the meeting.
i don't know what you're planning as a fall back ,but trains between BRI &BTH are running late this morning caused by a signalling problem this disrupted service is expected to continue until at least 1300 today.
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martyjon
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« Reply #17 on: June 30, 2018, 10:32:18 am »

Does defensive scheduling include instances where a station is unstaffed, in this instance, Chippenham, which is currently the advice on JourneyCheck so no-one to advise pax what to do in the event of a Swindon - Westbury or v.v. service is cancelled.
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grahame
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« Reply #18 on: June 30, 2018, 10:51:31 am »

Does defensive scheduling include instances where a station is unstaffed, in this instance, Chippenham, which is currently the advice on JourneyCheck so no-one to advise pax what to do in the event of a Swindon - Westbury or v.v. service is cancelled.

Ah ...

Quote
Chippenham Facilities: Various changes
At Chippenham station, the following issues have been reported:
The ticket office is closed.
The station is unstaffed.
Additional Information
Please purchase tickets at the ticket vending machine or, if unavailable, at the first available opportunity to do so when no other means of purchasing them is available at the station.

Defensive scheduling certainly includes changing at staffed rather than unstaffed.   On TransWilts in the afternoon, that's usually a change at Chippenham (typically 10 minutes to arrange rail replacement) rather than Trowbridge (up to 90 minutes to arrange rail replacement).
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grahame
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« Reply #19 on: June 30, 2018, 11:00:59 am »

I don't know what you're planning as a fall back ,but trains between BRI &BTH are running late this morning caused by a signalling problem this disrupted service is expected to continue until at least 1300 today.

Very interesting journey underway.

06:49 Carlisle to Euston cancelled.  Next express at 07:49 would be too late to connect to 2 p.m. meeting

Took the 07:02 to Wolverhampton, changed there to the 09:41 Bournemouth train, headed for Reading where I can pick up the express from Paddington.  Carlisle to London Terminals is valid via Reading.

Looking at the Bath to Bristol issues, 2 cancellations on the TransWilts and a lack of station staff at Chippenham, I will probably catch the Newquay train from Reading to Westbury, from where it is only a short train or bus ride up to Trowbridge. Defensive scheduling has also encouraged me to miss changing at Oxford and Didcot instead of at Reading.
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eightonedee
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« Reply #20 on: June 30, 2018, 11:19:43 am »

Good call Grahame  - that's why I am an XC fan!

It's a sign of the times that we're off to Oxford from Goring for a social do, and have decided to take an earlier train.....
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martyjon
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« Reply #21 on: July 02, 2018, 11:32:54 am »

Chippenham unstaffed again today according to JourneyCheck.
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Timmer
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« Reply #22 on: July 02, 2018, 11:38:50 am »

Chippenham unstaffed again today according to JourneyCheck.

Quite a busy station to leave unstaffed.
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martyjon
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« Reply #23 on: July 03, 2018, 09:02:08 am »

Chippenham unstaffed again today according to JourneyCheck.

And again 03 Jul 2018.
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martyjon
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« Reply #24 on: July 04, 2018, 07:58:21 am »

Chippenham unstaffed again today according to JourneyCheck.

And again 04 Jul 2018.
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eightonedee
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« Reply #25 on: July 04, 2018, 06:08:13 pm »

But Chippenham is station with a "footfall" of nearly 2 million a year!
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martyjon
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« Reply #26 on: July 04, 2018, 08:12:30 pm »

Chippenham unstaffed again today according to JourneyCheck.
And again 04 Jul 2018.

Must of found someone to man the station during today as its now not listed on JourneyCheck as a problem.
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trainer
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« Reply #27 on: July 09, 2018, 11:01:11 pm »

Graham wrote on 27/06/18
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08:02 train cancelled, lack of conductor.  We were all on board and the driver turfed us off - "sorry - just heard we have been cancelled". Train left empty a few minutes behind schedule with just the driver and the young lady on the buffet trolley who was going to have extremely lean takings.

Somewhat belatedly, I am able to add a partial explanation to this apparently odd movement that seems daft in isolation. I used the Far North Line last week and the entire crew of the 07:00 from Inverness - Wick swap with the crew from the 08:02 Southbound train at Lairg, so the driver and the catering person would be providing a unit and a trolley for the pax joining from Lairg southward and the driver would bring the northbound unit back for the next service south.  I cannot find any information about whether the pax who had got up even earlier to travel north were turfed off at Lairg as Real Time Trains records accurately that the train runs but not that anyone was on it.  As it happens it is recorded as arriving on time in Inverness.
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grahame
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« Reply #28 on: July 10, 2018, 07:22:20 am »

Graham wrote on 27/06/18
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08:02 train cancelled, lack of conductor.  We were all on board and the driver turfed us off - "sorry - just heard we have been cancelled". Train left empty a few minutes behind schedule with just the driver and the young lady on the buffet trolley who was going to have extremely lean takings.

Somewhat belatedly, I am able to add a partial explanation to this apparently odd movement that seems daft in isolation. I used the Far North Line last week and the entire crew of the 07:00 from Inverness - Wick swap with the crew from the 08:02 Southbound train at Lairg, so the driver and the catering person would be providing a unit and a trolley for the pax joining from Lairg southward and the driver would bring the northbound unit back for the next service south.  I cannot find any information about whether the pax who had got up even earlier to travel north were turfed off at Lairg as Real Time Trains records accurately that the train runs but not that anyone was on it.  As it happens it is recorded as arriving on time in Inverness.

I think it may have arrived empty even into Inverness though - certainly cancelled from Tain to Inverness (that's south of Lairg) as there were some very unhappy people who had had to get a taxi from there to connect onwards to their Edinburgh train.  And I noted that the 13:35 Inverness to Kyle of Lochalsh was also cancelled due to lack of crew.   Scotrail staff are of the feeling that the thing is being run on a shoestring without a downturn in investment in staff - not a happy bunch when you get chatting.
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trainer
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« Reply #29 on: July 10, 2018, 03:17:58 pm »

I was very fortunate then.  I had a good experience with Scotrail: they even held back the last train north when my train from Edinburgh arrived late at Inverness.

It is amazing how just one or journey's, good or bad can colour one's opinion.  Certainly cancelling trains in such remote areas will have major impacts on those that rely on them.
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