ScotRail confirms end to reduced pandemic timetable next week

A timetable with fewer services was introduced in January in response to a high number of staff absences.

ScotRail confirms end to reduced pandemic timetable next week iStock

ScotRail is to restore its full timetable next week – after a reduced service was introduced due to Covid staff absences.

The rail operator implemented a temporary timetable, with fewer services, in January which was extended into the start of this month.

But, ScotRail has now confirmed that the reduced timetable will come to an end on February 14.

It means that that number of services each day will increase to 2000, according to the rail operator.

The changes have been made possible despite around 150 ScotRail staff, including 50 drivers, absent due to the virus.

At the peak of the Omicron wave, more than 450 ScotRail staff are said to have been absent.

The company has also reminded customers of government guidelines including maintaining good hand hygiene and the mandatory wearing of a face covering for the entirety of their journey, which includes on trains and in stations – both enclosed and open-air platforms.

David Simpson, ScotRail service delivery director, explained the operator still faces “significant challenges”, but they are confident of providing a reliable service for customers.

“The introduction of some temporary changes to our timetable was important for our customers, providing a level of certainty during a challenging time,” he said.

“Those changes have allowed us to keep people moving across the country, and our staff worked flat out to run a safe and reliable railway in really difficult and continually changing circumstances.

“We still face significant challenges, with 150 staff absent, but with things improving, and restrictions across Scotland being relaxed, we are now able to safely reintroduce our full timetable of around 2000 services a day.

“The pandemic is not over yet and we will still face some disruption due to staff absence, but we are confident of providing a reliable service for our customers.”

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