ScotRail claims the practice of stop-skipping in Fife has fallen by 63 per cent, after a woeful Christmas period which saw concerns raised by passengers and politicians
ScotRailThe figures were released ahead of a meeting ScotRail Alliance managing director Alex Hynes and transport minister Humza Yousaf will have with Fife MSPs in Parliament tomorrow.
Fifers complained of awful services to the Kingdom throughout November and December last year, with stations like Kinghorn, Burntisland, Aberdour and Dalgety Bay being missed out on crucial early morning services.
The rail firm says that for the four week period to December 9, 2017, trains on the Fife Circle missed 376 scheduled stops.
This fell to 138 missed scheduled station stops in the four week period to March 3 – a drop of 63 per cent, according to ScotRail.
ScotRail say that 90.1 per cent of trains on the Fife Circle arrived within five minutes of their scheduled time in the four weeks to 3 March 2018 – having stopped at all scheduled stations - compared to just 79 per cent in the four weeks to December 9.
Stop skipping is when a train misses out a scheduled stop. ScotRail says it does this to prevent that disruption having a wider knock-on impact on other services.
When a station is missed it automatically counts as a fail for the purposes of performance targets.
ScotRail Alliance managing director Alex Hynes said: “I am looking forward to meeting with Fife MSPs to set out what we are doing to build the best railway Scotland has ever had. We work closely with elected representatives in Fife to ensure that the voice of our customers, and their constituents, is heard.
“Our performance hasn’t been good enough in recent months, but these figures show that things are improving. More of our trains are arriving on time, and we have reduced stop skipping by 63 per cent in recent months. We’re working hard to reduce this even further.
“Stop skipping is something that we only do when absolutely necessary, to prevent further disruption across the network. I am very clear that it should always be a last resort.”
Scottish Labour’s Claire Baker MSP said: “Despite the reduction, we should still be seeing less than 138 missed stops during a short four-week period.
“This averages at 34 stops a week or 5 a day. We were promised that no trains would skip stations and this should be delivered.
“These are more than just figures on a spreadsheet, they are workers missing meetings, parents struggling to get home for childcare and commuters getting increasingly frustrated with the current service on the Fife Circle.”