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BBC Scotland's Joanne Macaulay reports
"Railtrack hopes to complete most of the work on the West Coast Main Line by Sunday"
 real 56k

Saturday, 28 October, 2000, 17:24 GMT 18:24 UK
On track for more train delays
Train passenger
Trains will be delayed on both coasts
Train passengers in Scotland face delays for the next week, Railtrack has warned.

Rail users in Scotland have already been hit by severe disruption caused by the extra maintenance work which started this weekend.

The emergency repairs are being carried out in the light of the Hertfordshire rail crash, in which four people died.

Railtrack has imposed speed limits on 14 stretches of line in Scotland, which are among up to 350 sites across the UK network where 1,850 hairline cracks on rails have been identified.

Checking the track
Speed limits have been imposed on tracks
The company hoped to work through the night and complete most of the West Coast Main Line maintenance work by Sunday.

But a spokesman said Railtrack expected it would take until next weekend before the rest of the repairs were completed.

This weekend's disruption has added about two hours to journey times on the West Coast Main Line to London.

Journeys on the east coast line are facing delays of about an hour, and Great Northern Eastern (GNER) is replacing its trains with buses on its services north of Edinburgh.

Behind schedule

Scotrail said knock-on effects from the speed restrictions had forced it to cancel one of Friday night's overnight sleeper services from London.

And its 2130 BST Highlander service to Inverness, Aberdeen and Fort William, via Edinburgh, left Euston nearly three hours late on Friday and arrived five hours behind schedule.

A Scotrail spokesman said the works and speed restrictions were putting next week's sleeper services in jeopardy.

"We are having a meeting tomorrow to decide whether we will have to cancel one of the overnight sleepers on Sunday," he said.

Temporary restrictions

"We have also warned passengers that in the current circumstances we are having difficulty arriving in London before noon, so if their business is time sensitive then we are advising them to cancel."

Delays of between 10 and 15 minutes were expected on the Edinburgh to Glasgow line and on some sections of the Strathclyde Passenger Transport network.

Speed limits of 20mph have been imposed on the following 14 stretches of track in Scotland:

  • Rutherglen junction and Newton West junction

  • Lanark junction-Ravenstruther

  • Carluke-Cleghorn

  • Bowling-Kilpatrick

  • Finnieston East-Hyndland

  • Kinghorn-Burntisland

  • Carntyne-Bellgrove

  • Shieldmuir-Garriongill

  • Knightswood North-Finnieston East

  • Ayton

  • Inverurie-Oyne

  • Boundry-Reston (two sections)

  • Arbroath.

On Thursday, train companies were given two weeks to come up with a national recovery plan for the rail network.

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See also:

27 Oct 00 | Scotland
Speed curbs put on rail lines
26 Oct 00 | Scotland
Delays warning as track reopens
24 Oct 00 | Talking Point
Scotland: Rail line closure - your views
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