Stirling MSP Bruce Crawford has hit out at a response from ScotRail to his letter to the Managing Director this month.
Mr Crawford initially raised the issue of a high number of cancellations, asking the rail operator how it was possible that staffing shortages had caused such disruption, and why ScotRail were not prepared with contingency planning to withstand such occasions, as well as what the operator was doing to ensure that they are prepared in the short and long term. The response that Mr Crawford received did not answer these enquiries.
Mr Crawford has received a large number of complaints about the changes to the ScotRail timetable between Dunblane and Stirling, and out to Glasgow and Edinburgh.
He has since written to the Cabinet Secretary for Transport, raising his concern about the new timetable, and about the number of cancellations.
ScotRail have released new proposed timetables for May 2019, many of the changes do address some of the concerns brought to Mr Crawford.
Commenting, he said:
“Commuters rightly expect a much higher standard of service than they are receiving at the moment, frankly the situation that my constituents continue to be faced with is not good enough.
“For too long, we have heard complaints about there being too few carriages on peak time services – and the situation is only made worse by a number of cancellations and inconvenient changes to the timetable.
“ScotRail, as a large organisation, should be prepared to deal with situations such as staffing shortages. It is frankly unacceptable that passengers have been put in the situation where a large number of services across the country have been cancelled, which has only made later services even more busy.
“I am disappointed in the response that I have received from ScotRail, which did not reflect on this specific point, so I have followed this up with them.
“However, I am encouraged that their new proposed timetable will begin to address some of the concerns made specifically about train times.
“The Scottish Government has invested in electrifying the railway in central Scotland. Once this is delivered, it will give passengers faster, cleaner, larger, and greener trains. However, until then, commuters should have access to the best possible service – and this just simply hasn’t been the case in recent weeks.”