Saturday 18 February 2017

ScotRail To Pay Nearly £2,000 A Day To Fed Up Passengers


The beleaguered operator gave disgruntled travellers £587,527 between April and December 2016.

Most of the payments - £340,000 - were for delayed services, according to a freedom of information request by the Scottish Conservatives.

A further £178,000 was paid out in full or partial refunds to commuters who said it had not met the agreed level of service while £52,000 was given as a “gesture of goodwill”.

More than £10,000 was handed out in compensation over the nine months and £6,000 in refunds.

ScotRail handed cash to passengers in 40,002 cases in the period.

December was the most expensive month, with a total of £98,878 claimed in 9,224 cases compared to 1,963 cases in April securing £24,244 recompense.

The weeks before Christmas saw a day of major disruption, when a broken down train in Edinburgh caused chaos on the railways.

The figures come just weeks after passengers were hit by another hike in fares and following widespread public anger over delays, cancellations, and overcrowding.

Scottish Tory transport spokesman Liam Kerr said: “It’s no surprise the bill has surpassed £500,000 for the last nine months when you consider the problems on our railways.

“As well as passengers, you have to feel for the staff, who are doing their best with no help from the Scottish Government, and they will be wondering how transport minister Humza Yousaf ever allowed it to get this bad.”

Earlier this week, ScotRail boasted its performance had improved with 91.6 per cent of trains on time or less than five minutes late in the four weeks to February 4.

But its average over the past 12 months now stands at 90.1 per cent - short of the 91.3 per cent target stipulated in Dutch firm Abellio’s £7billion, 10-year franchise.

Mr Yousaf has warned it could have its contract terminated if performance declines further

The operator was ordered by the Government to produce a 249-point performance improvement plan in September.



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