STILL NO DATE FOR REINSTATEMENT OF ISLAND LINE SERVICE ALMOST 10 MONTHS AFTER CLOSURE

South Western Railway has still not been able to provide a date as to when Island Line services will resume between Ryde Pier Head and Shanklin – and it could be several more weeks yet.

The line was meant to re-open some 6 months ago following a 3-month closure of the railway as part of a £26million improvement scheme, but almost 10 months since the line closed passengers are still being shuttled around on buses.

Most of the infrastructure work has been completed with only snagging items to deal with, but there is still a ‘very complex’ issue with the software used onboard the new trains. Teams from Vivarail are said to be continuing to work through the software issues, but there has been no indication as to when this is likely to be completed.

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Island Echo understands that the line may re-open by 6th October, but with only rumour to go on there is no level of certainty at this stage. Other dates suggested include the end of October and the end of November.

South Western Railway and Vivarail both say that the safety and reliability of the service remains the number 1 priority and that both organisations are working hard to ensure all the problems are fully resolved.

It’s said that the process of testing, which has been taking place for several weeks now, is designed to identify problems now before the trains enter into passenger service. Depending on the problem, it will take a variable amount of time to fix.

It has been suggested to Island Echo that the new trains are struggling to make up the required amount of fault-free hours to be given the green light for passenger transport.

A spokesperson for SWR has told Island Echo:

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“When we announce a date, we want to be absolutely sure we will meet it to provide certainty to our customers”.

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The views/opinions expressed in these comments are solely those of the author and do not represent those of Island Echo. House rules on commenting must be followed at all times.
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Ryde Reader
Ryde Reader
4 months ago

Will people return to the service? After 10 months regular users will have got used to a ‘new way’ of getting to their destinations. Not many using the replacement bus service. But the worrying bit is ‘that the new trains are struggling to make up the required amount of fault-free hours’ I do hope we haven’t got a ‘floating bridge’ fiasco in train form!

Mark Taylor
Mark Taylor
Reply to  Ryde Reader
4 months ago

Yes they well. If anything they’ll see a huge increase in the service. The train is the better way to go from ryde to shanklin. The fact that the old train was so bad meant many islanders didn’t bother with it. They likely will now.

Asitis
Asitis
Reply to  Mark Taylor
4 months ago

Tar mac the lot, make it a one way road or a toll road to releive the added traffic when pen feather et al are built and adding thousands of extra cars per day.

Bird table
Bird table
Reply to  Asitis
4 months ago

I think you find they will have their own station.

Mmmm
Mmmm
Reply to  Ryde Reader
4 months ago

They’ll get people if they charge the right price. But I suspect new trains and new technology, means new prices.

I used a bus once many moons ago when I moved over cos it was chucking it down. I was charged £3 to travel half a mile, so never used a bus here since. Apart from the fabulous ones at the Ryde museum.

Fedup
Fedup
4 months ago

Please excuse me asking, but what the hell do we need a computer on these trains for? Surely an operative, complete with one brain and two eyes, is all that is needed up front to operate these trains on this ‘highly complex’ network. Get real rail!

Gary
Gary
Reply to  Fedup
4 months ago

It’s a lot more complex than that. The operation of them is that simple, but there’s a hell of a lot that goes on in between the controls and the wheels. There are more systems in there to stop the train moving than to make it move (safety systems such as door locking, signal interfaces, air tank pressures etc). There’s also control systems for the doors, air conditioning, lighting, traction supplies, auxiliary supplies etc. Not to mention all the diagnostic systems. Trains are very complex bits of kit these days.

isle of wighter
isle of wighter
Reply to  Gary
4 months ago

and all that stuff was working before they bought them, whilst they were in use on the line they were operating on beforehand – this is just a smoke screen – to cover up the landslips at shanklin, the lack of clearance in Ryde st johns tunnel, the poor state of the pier tracks, the fact that stations needed altering in shape, the pier head being dilapidated and the pier itself not being ready to carry that weight of train.

Frankspencer
Frankspencer
Reply to  isle of wighter
3 months ago

You’re wrong on almost everything you say!

GrahamG
GrahamG
4 months ago

Islanders, don’t feel too hard done by, this nation can’t do infrastructure on time and on budget if it tried.

Keith jennings
Keith jennings
Reply to  GrahamG
4 months ago

Steam trains did not have computers
Just coal and water run on time over larger route could go forward and backwards no problems

fred
fred
Reply to  Keith jennings
4 months ago

And were always late.

Frankspencer
Frankspencer
Reply to  Keith jennings
3 months ago

And we’re not liked that much at the time, people with rose tinted glasses.

fred
fred
Reply to  GrahamG
4 months ago

We did the best Olympics. We lead the world in technology, the most popular CPU design in history is designed in the UK.

Funny Face
Funny Face
4 months ago

It will be just like the floating bridge!!

Mark
Mark
Reply to  Funny Face
4 months ago

Nah – this train’s got the bridge beaten hands down.

It’s breaking down and establishing it’s credentials as something that works more by accident than design even before it goes into service even the FB wasn’t (quite) that bad.

fred
fred
Reply to  Mark
4 months ago

When has it broken down? It seems to be working well to me. A lot of safety checks need to be made.

Frankspencer
Frankspencer
Reply to  Mark
3 months ago

Can you show evidence of it breaking down because I can’t find any, but I can of the floating Bridge.

T.L Wainscot
T.L Wainscot
4 months ago

After leaving service with London Underground, these trains had their front-end (cab) emergency evacuation doors sealed up.

Ryde Tunnel is a single track ‘bore’ with tight clearances alongside the train.

So without these front-end emergency evacuation doors, how can passengers be evacuated quickly and safely from a failed train in the tunnel – let alone one that is (say) on fire?

All the previous electric (ex. tube) trains on the Island had front-end emergency evacuation capability.

Frankspencer
Frankspencer
Reply to  T.L Wainscot
3 months ago

That’s wrong, they sealed up the 485 front doors. They did an evacuation exercise when they took the first 484 train into the tunnel a month or so ago.

 

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