Chairman Pip's Railway Thoughts

Railways to the rescue!!

Posted in Great Britain, Other general stuff about railways by Chairman Pip on 16 April 2010

The eruption of Eyjafjallajökull in Iceland has led to some minor difficulties with air travel in Europe. In that there isn’t any. The United Kingdom, with the exception of case by case flights from Glasgow and the airports in Northern Ireland, is a completely aircraft free zone. And thus, the railways have stepped into the breach – Eurostar has gone some way to erasing its humiliation over the snow by putting on extra trains between London, Paris and Brussels, while Network Rail has cancelled all but the most essential engineering work over the next few days, to allow the train operators to maintain their timetables (and where possible run additional trains).

“Impact of the volcano ash cloud – we’re allowing more trains to run”

Both Virgin Trains (up to 2000 extra) and East Coast (up to 5000 extra) have reported increased numbers, with East Coast having to hire in extra rolling stock and extending some services as far as Edinburgh. This is somewhat reminiscent of Christmas 2006, when the country was blanketed in fog and many airlines simply would not risk flying. As a consequence, the long distance operators (then GNER, Virgin and Eurostar) were able to take up some of the passenger load of people stranded and struggling to get home for Christmas. Of course, if you’re going somewhere that isn’t easily accessible by rail, then you are kinda stuck. Nevertheless, it is good that the infrastructure can hold up in events like this. I reckon, had there been a strike, even the most hard hearted of union members would have crossed the picket line to ensure that people stranded like this could get to where they needed to be. After all, it’s the decent thing to do. Even in the face of red-face raging from the union barons.

Mr Potato Head

Red faced rages?

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