Breaking news: GWR has a recovery plan but no timetable

After five days we now have a “service recovery plan” to restore rail services!

[One more to add to the list of “recovery plans” – Owl]

Trains that were taken out of service after cracks were found will be reintroduced after “rigorous safety checks”, the Rail Delivery Group says.

BBC News

The industry body said Great Western Railway and London North Eastern Railway (LNER) will ramp-up services.

There has been disruption for passengers since Saturday after small cracks were discovered on the base frame of some Hitachi Class 800 trains.

The rail minister warned passengers to expect disruption for “some time”.

Travellers are being advised to continue to check with their operator before they travel.

In a statement, the Rail Delivery Group said Hitachi Rail, train operators and the government have agreed a “service recovery plan” to reintroduce more Class 800 and 385 trains after they were taken out of service on Saturday.

But it said trains on some routes may be less frequent than usual and train availability could vary.

The industry has put in place “suitable criteria for the trains to meet before they can re-enter service”, the Rail Delivery Group said.

Rail Minister Chris Heaton-Harris said he welcomed the news that “many trains” can return following safety checks.

“Trains should begin to return to service after further inspections have been carried out, helping to safely restore the reliable and punctual services on GWR and LNER that passengers deserve,” he said.

“Safety is our absolute focus, which is why Hitachi will carry out a comprehensive daily testing regime on affected trains.”

He said the “next step” will be for Hitachi to present its long-term repair plan for the fleet, which he expects “shortly”.

“Whilst this long-term fix can partly be incorporated into the regular service pattern for these trains, we do expect disruption to services for some time to come, but hope passengers understand this work is essential to ensure these issues do not occur again,” Mr Heaton-Harris said.