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Author Topic: Not all cancellations count....  (Read 612 times)
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« on: November 27, 2022, 04:01:24 pm »

First, I've put this here as, for some reason I can't post a new item in "The Wider Picture"

Apparently if services are cancelled before 10pm the day before, they not counted in official figures or towards Delay Repay...

https://www.msn.com/en-gb/news/uknews/revealed-north-of-england-train-line-vastly-under-reports-cancellations/ar-AA14BJ5Z?ocid=msedgntp&cvid=19817c15f55742968b69d0ba1236709a

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7 Billion people on a wet rock - of course we're not happy
grahame
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« Reply #1 on: November 27, 2022, 04:19:07 pm »

First, I've put this here as, for some reason I can't post a new item in "The Wider Picture"

The "Wider" picture has been split to UK (United Kingdom) and "even wider" because they were two distinctly different underlying topics there - one about how the British system works and the other looking at worldwide lessons.  I'll move this topic to the UK one.
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grahame
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« Reply #2 on: November 27, 2022, 04:34:14 pm »

Apparently if services are cancelled before 10pm the day before, they not counted in official figures or towards Delay Repay...

Yep, that's why the rail industry's stats look so much better that the reality, where there have been hardly any trains for eight days over the last few months, and there are another eight days coming up over the next two months.    If an "alternative timetable" is in place a couple of days ahead, those who are ostriches can bury their heads in the sand and pretend they are doing well for the railway's passengers or the growing hordes of wannabe-passengers.  When they are stopping being wannabes and routinely stop travelling or start using alternatives ...
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ChrisB
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« Reply #3 on: November 27, 2022, 05:36:21 pm »

Which is fair enough frankly - but yes, it ought to be at least 48 hours out, not previous night IMO (in my opinion). Otherwise no TOC (Train Operating Company) would ever publish a 'normal' timetable, but add in services each week to get to a 'proper' timetable.
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stuving
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« Reply #4 on: November 27, 2022, 05:58:16 pm »

Which is fair enough frankly - but yes, it ought to be at least 48 hours out, not previous night IMO (in my opinion). Otherwise no TOC (Train Operating Company) would ever publish a 'normal' timetable, but add in services each week to get to a 'proper' timetable.

The point being that failure to run an advertised service has to be accepted as something that happens, and TOCS are judged on how often by including it in one of those implausibly complicated incentive computations. That's part of the contract, so DfT» (Department for Transport - about)'s business, but happens to be monitored by ORR» (Office of Rail and Road formerly Office of Rail Regulation - about) as well. Failure to advertise a service required in the SLC (Service Level Commitment) is also DfT's business, as a matter of breach of contract. However, DfT have become rather indulgent in this respect - understandable with respect to Covid, but the effect has persisted.

I think the original idea was that breach of contract was more serious so no TOC would do it just to avoid a cancellation without good reason (like a closed line). Now, that balance and the very short cut-off allowed look to be misaligned.
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ChrisB
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« Reply #5 on: November 27, 2022, 06:02:29 pm »

If they weren't permitted, they'd be heavily fined every time adverse weather affected services, which no TOC (Train Operating Company) would accept as a fair contract term
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grahame
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« Reply #6 on: November 27, 2022, 07:26:18 pm »

If they weren't permitted, they'd be heavily fined every time adverse weather affected services, which no TOC (Train Operating Company) would accept as a fair contract term

Indeed ... but we need to differentiate between

1. The passenger reliability figure - if his or her train doesn't run, or a connection misses. It doesn't matter if it's a lack of driver, lack of working train, signallers on strike, roasted pheasant in the electrics, rails too hot, person hit by train, floods.

2. The contract reliability figure - that the contract / remuneration to the TOC is based on, which is a subset of the above.  But that should be considered an internal industry thing - Joe Public is only exceptionally accepting if his service does not turn up.
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« Reply #7 on: November 27, 2022, 10:23:55 pm »

First, I've put this here as, for some reason I can't post a new item in "The Wider Picture"

Apparently if services are cancelled before 10pm the day before, they not counted in official figures or towards Delay Repay...

https://www.msn.com/en-gb/news/uknews/revealed-north-of-england-train-line-vastly-under-reports-cancellations/ar-AA14BJ5Z?ocid=msedgntp&cvid=19817c15f55742968b69d0ba1236709a
I’ve had first hand experience of this a few years back when the train we were booked on (Advance tickets) was cancelled because of train crew shortages due to Christmas parties.

This meant the train wasn’t in the system to be able to claim Delay Repay making it one heck of challenge getting our money back because computer said no. Had to take it to the top, something I don’t like doing, to get a result.

Also had an issue with the train manager, who because he couldn’t see our cancelled train on his PDA, thought we were trying it on travelling on a different train. Obviously wasn’t invited to the particular Christmas party that caused our train to be cancelled.

TOCs (Train Operating Company) shouldn’t be allowed to get away with not paying out by cancelling trains the day before that you are booked on. Unacceptable.
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ChrisB
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« Reply #8 on: November 28, 2022, 09:17:29 am »

Weather-related cancellations excepted. IMHO (in my humble opinion)
« Last Edit: November 28, 2022, 09:26:32 am by ChrisB » Logged
Timmer
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« Reply #9 on: November 28, 2022, 10:11:36 am »

Weather-related cancellations excepted. IMHO (in my humble opinion)
Agreed, yes.
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Timmer
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« Reply #10 on: November 29, 2022, 06:21:33 am »

Credit where credit is due…

Put two Delay Repay claims in on Saturday afternoon, both approved last night. When it works, it works well.
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Timmer
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« Reply #11 on: December 06, 2022, 05:58:54 am »

Front page of today’s Metro:

Rail firms using loopholes to cancel thousands of services after customers have paid

https://metro.co.uk/2022/12/06/rail-firms-revealed-to-have-axed-thousands-of-trips-through-loop-holes-17883539/

Quote
Rail firms are using loopholes to axe thousands of services without officially recording them – after selling travellers tickets for the cancelled ‘ghost trains’.

A record 314,000 were dropped in the year to October 15, the Office of Road and Rail has admitted – but that figure does not include those hit by strikes, lost in ‘amended’ timetables or cancelled before 10pm the night before.

Veteran rail expert Christian Wolmar revealed the ruse, explaining: ‘I had a ticket for an 8am King’s Cross train – I looked on the station noticeboard and it wasn’t there. The man said there is no 8am train and I said I have a ticket for it. It was always on the timetable but it had become a phantom train.’

He said of the official figure – 3.8 per cent of services across the country: ‘I can’t remember such a high figure but it’s irrelevant because it only represents cancellations on the day.’
Continues…

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stuving
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« Reply #12 on: January 19, 2023, 05:47:53 pm »

The ORR» (Office of Rail and Road formerly Office of Rail Regulation - about) has now waded into this argument - and pretty bluntly, for bureaucrats:
Quote
19 January 2023
The Office of Rail and Road has today written to the rail industry outlining the need to change how they record ‘pre-cancellations’ and to introduce a more passenger-friendly and transparent way of working when making late changes to services.

Passengers using many parts of the GB (Great Britain) rail network are suffering from poor performance.

Train cancellations are at record levels, and an ORR investigation confirmed a further gap between cancellations statistics and the passenger experience.

This was driven by an increased number of unrecorded ‘pre-cancellations’.

Such ‘pre-cancellations’ (via a process known as ‘p-coding') can be confirmed as late as 22:00 the previous evening and are not included in the timetables that railway performance statistics are measured against.

For a passenger this could mean that a train they expected to catch when they went to bed can disappear from the timetable by the time they leave for the station unaware that the train has been cancelled.

Historically such changes have been made to support the introduction of emergency timetables when poor weather or infrastructure damage has required a whole-scale change to train service on a route. Service performance is measured against the published replacement (emergency) timetable instead.

The regulator finds that over the last year this mechanism has been used differently.

Late changes have been made to timetables by withdrawing services when insufficient staff or no appropriate trains are available. ORR says this is an inappropriate application of the Network Code’s provisions on emergency timetables.

ORR has today written to all train companies telling them to stop using this inappropriate approach and to ask Network Rail to coordinate the industry to come up with a better way of doing things.

Until this takes full effect, ORR requires all train companies to supply specific data on any ‘resource availability shortage pre-cancellations’. ORR will publish this data alongside official statistics in the future, ensuring full public transparency.
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ChrisB
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« Reply #13 on: January 19, 2023, 05:56:46 pm »

Wonder how long it'll take to put into effect?

Glad they showed their teeth. I have no problem with extreme weather use, but as the ORR» (Office of Rail and Road formerly Office of Rail Regulation - about) says, not for staff & stock shortages. Even after a strike.
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