UK & World News
Trains Cancelled Due To Driver Shortage
A train company has cancelled more than 100 services due to a shortage of train drivers, causing anger among commuters.
London Midland cancelled 60 services and partially cancelled 40 others on Saturday, after hundreds of trains have been disrupted in recent weeks due to the problem.
The company has apologised to customers, saying the shortfall in qualified train drivers should be addressed by mid-December.
The services affected run mainly through the West Midlands to London and the north-west.
In the past three weeks 1.6 % of their services have been disrupted. The company usually provide 1,300 services a day.
A spokesperson from the train firm told Sky News: "We are being open and transparent so people can plan their journeys. Not all the disruption caused today (Saturday) is as the result of train driver shortages."
In the meantime, London Midland said they were working hard to ensure the impact on customers was kept to a minimum.
"We have a dedicated team focusing on delivering the train service on a day-by-day basis and as a result we have been able to run a near-normal timetable on all but a few days, compensating for the shortage with drivers who have volunteered for overtime."
However, some train passengers at Birmingham New Street say they are annoyed by the disruption.
One woman travelling into the city centre said: "I think it's a scandal really when lots of people are looking for work and there are enough people to do the work here. It's silly I can't understand it...I don't understand why they suddenly don't have enough."
Another family travelling from Northampton said: "We live in Northampton and we often like to come to Birmingham to see some shows but we have had to pay £10 parking at Northampton only to be told there were no trains available.
"How it's come to this I don't know. We have managed to get in this morning but getting home I don't know if we have a train or not."
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what do you think?
At £60,000.00 plus per annum they are short of drivers - need to get some of the scroungers on benefits trained up or could they not afford the drop in income
Windows Live User
I could do with a job. 60k plus is alright I suppose....but I must be home each night Its a long way from home, but I would do the NW runs, so if they paid my travel and showed me how................
Rhonda Louise Ayling
Fact - Drivers do NOT earn £60k per year!!!
You are right its only upto Â£47,707.00 per week for a 4 day week plus another Â£18,000,00 overtime for the extra day. just to push a lever and watch for signal - no steering to worry about The basic salary for a first officer (pilot) for a medium sized airline £24,000.00
I'd do it for half that money. A 5 year old could do it!
A 5 year old by that time they would have had 3 years experience
Sad, sad situation. Train companies have relied on the good will of staff to work overtime - and if they refuse? Problems as we now see! Trouble is this: pay the drivers too much, they want overtime to get even more; when they are comfortable, they do not want to work the overtime! I do not blame them for that! The answer (albeit long-term) (and contrary to the stupid comment from a previous correspondent who suggested a 5-yr-old could do it) : the train companies simply must employ, train, and RETAIN more drivers. I cannot believe that that is so difficult, given the reported high wages.
2 local steam railways offer drivers courses, one cost £95.00 the other £230.00 obviously not that difficult
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