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ScotRail unveils action plan to tackle performance
Talking about the publication of the plan today, Mr Yousaf said:
“Scotland’s railways are currently more popular than ever with 95.5 million journeys made in 2015-16, up by a third since 2007. We recognise the pressure this continuing popularity places on some services, most notably during the peak, which is why we are investing the record sum of £5 billion up to 2019 to ensure our railway can keep pace with demand.
“We are completely committed to help ScotRail deliver a service that has value for money and reliable, comfortable and punctual services at its core. We accept that in order to deliver the major and ambitious infrastructure enhancements planned for the rail network and ScotRail fleets in the coming years there will be some short-term challenges. We are grateful for the public’s patience as we address decades of neglect and get things back on track.
“I have seen some of the work that has gone into developing this Plan which sets out the actions that ScotRail will take over the short, medium and longer term to improve performance and the journey experience across the rail network. I know passengers want to see services in Scotland they can rely on and I have asked Transport Scotland to monitor the actions to ensure each initiative is being progressed and delivered to address these matters.
“ScotRail will shortly be commencing the installation of passenger counting equipment on trains which will help to identify “busier” services. This will in turn allow ScotRail to better focus the provision of rolling stock onto the rail network. I note that some extra trains will be introduced in Strathclyde in the coming months and looking ahead 23% more seats will be provided across all services by 2019. This includes a new fleet of faster trains on the Glasgow-Edinburgh line from next Autumn, longer high speed trains on inter-city routes with 40% more seats than today, plus a revolution in rail which delivers 200 additional services and 20,000 extra seats.
“We must also remember staff at the front line across the railway show real commitment in delivering services for all their customers. It is important we recognise their efforts in what is often difficult circumstance through no fault of their own."