BBC Reporting Scotland, STV News and most of Scotland’s newspapers are alive with hysterical accounts of a crisis in Scotland’s railway system after a single incident in Edinburgh last Thursday. Already the First Minister has felt obliged to apologise and Transport Minister, Humza Yousef, has faced calls to resign from Unionist politicians. Needless to say the mainstream media reports have been utterly devoid of facts or context. Look at the table below and you’ll see that the commonly used measure of train punctuality ‘also known as PPM (public performance measure) means trains arriving at their terminating station within five minutes for commuter services and within 10 minutes for long distance services’, for ScotRail, has actually been better than the average for the UK as a whole and has improved on the figure for 2015/16.
Performance by train operator
The table below shows the average PPM for Britain as a whole and by train operating company. The moving annual average is calculated over the 365 days to 12 November.
|Train Operating Company||PPM % period 8, 2015/16||PPM % period 8, 2016/17||PPM Moving annual average (MAA)|
|Abellio Greater Anglia||86.0||86.8||89.2|
|Arriva Trains Wales||90.1||88.6||91.7|
|East Midlands Trains||89.5||87.5||92.2|
|First Hull Trains||78.3||82.4||83.2|
|Govia Thameslink Railway||74.2||69.9||75.6|
|Great Western Railway||85.0||85.0||89.1|
|Stagecoach South West Trains||86.8||85.5||88.3|
|Virgin Trains East Coast||80.3||80.9||82.7|
|Virgin Trains West Coast||86.4||90.5||87.1|
|Total England & Wales Performance||84.3||85.1||87.9 *|
*The total label above is just another piece of Anglo-centrism by some anonymous website data entry assistant and is the UK figure as indicated at the top of the table.
Strangely, the Secretary of State for Transport, Chris Grayling, has not been called upon to resign despite the appalling record of Westminster’s local line, Govia Thameslink Railway, with only 69.9% of trains arriving on or near on-time. ‘Govia?’ What does that remind me of? Is the Right Dishonourable Michael Gove on the board there?