One under fire over train delays

THE REGION'S train operator came under fire last night following the way it handled severe disruptions on the London mainline which led to service delays of more than five hours.

THE REGION'S train operator came under fire last night following the way it handled severe disruptions on the London mainline which led to service delays of more than five hours.

The East Anglian Daily Times has received several telephone calls and emails from angry rail users who were caught up in the chaos on Wednesday evening.

Thousands of passengers were left stranded in trains and at stations for four or five hours because of an overhead wire problem at Hatfield Peverel.

Rail operator One have been fiercely criticised for its handling of the situation because it failed to give travellers accurate and up to date information.


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Steve Burke, from Manningtree, said: “It was pandemonium. I got down to Liverpool Street at 8.30pm and I eventually got on a train at 12.15am, returning home at 3.15am.

“I think we can all appreciate that these things happen from time to time but what really frustrates me is there was a total lack of communication.

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“If One had just come forward and said the delays would be closer to four hours then I could have made a judgement call and got a hotel.

“As it was I only had three hours sleep because I had get back into London for 9am.”

Andrea Waite, who caught the 8.08pm from London and arrived home at Colchester at 12.20am, said: “One should have been more honest and told us we were going to be stuck for hours so people could have got off at a station and made alternative arrangements.

“As it was they didn't so we stayed on the train.”

Trudy Seagon, who was on the 7.32pm Lowestoft train and arrived home at Saxmundham at 1.05am, said: “Unfortunately we were only given a time scale once, when the train was between stations, and no one could go anywhere.

“Passengers had to rely on whatever provisions they had on them. As usual when something is amiss on this line, we certainly didn't see any One staff with soft drink, claims forms or otherwise.”

A spokesman for One said the rail company, along with Network Rail, would be holding a thorough inquiry into the disruption.

He said: “We admit that information getting to customers wasn't as good as it could have been and we apologise for that.

“Everything from the inquiry will be noted and we will create a detailed action plan. We do have contingency plans in place for such eventualities but it is clear that there are still lessons to learn and certain areas that we need to strengthen.”

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