Manchester Metrolink Performance Update

It is almost time for the Metrolink and Rail Networks sub-committee of the Transport for Greater Manchester Committee to meet again, for the first time in 2015, and that means that we can once again bring you the latest Metrolink performance statistics. Periods 8 (Monday 10th November to Sunday 7th December 2014) and 9 (Monday 8th December 2014 to Sunday 4th January 2015) are under review this time around and we round-up the report with details on the service performance, details of major incidents, the LRVs themselves and the number of complaints received.


Again the performance as measured by Operated Mileage was on the decline during both of the periods under review. In period 8 it did remain over the benchmark figure of 98% at 98.29% (driver availability was the main reason for lost mileage) but period 9 was a particular challenge with a fall to 96.61% (mainly due to “exceptional weather conditions and in particular the high profile 13th December problems – see below).

Major Incidents

The following incidents caused delays of more than 30 minutes during these periods:

22nd November: A car drove onto the tracks at Baguley. Services were suspended from Northern Moor to Wythenshawe Town Centre between 1936 and 2013.

22nd November: Another car on the tracks, this time at Holt Town. Services were unable to run between Clayton and Piccadilly between 2203 and 2325.

23rd November: A points failure saw all services stopped between East Didsbury and West Didsbury from 1740 until 1851.

25th November: A police incident at Piccadilly Gardens led to severe delays between 0650 and 1200.

28th November: A road traffic collision meant that between 1804 and 1930 services were suspended from Robinswood to Roundthorn.

2nd December: Yet another car managed to find its way onto the tracks – this time at Oldham King Street. Services were suspended from Oldham Mumps to Westwood between 1540 and 1619.

8th December: Surprise, surprise a car on the tracks led to more delays. This incident was at New Islington and saw services between Piccadilly and Clayton Hall suspended from 1120 until 1255.

12th December: A road traffic collision meant that services were suspended between Droylsden and Ashton Moss. The suspension was in place between 0934 and 1039.

12th December: You will never guess what but another car drove onto the tracks, this one was at Roundthorn. No trams ran between Martinscroft and Baguley from 2033 until 2115.

13th December: Adverse weather conditions were the cause of significant delays. Ice caused problems at Trafford Depot, Airport, Rochdale and Ashton lines and all routes were suspended until 0800. The Bury and Rochdale lines were able to run from 1100 with all other lines returning at 1200.

13th December: A fire at a public house in Weaste meant no trams could run between Eccles and Broadway from 1815 until 2024.

16th December: Yes, another car on the tracks was the cause of more delays. This time it was at Barlow Moor Road and meant that from 1730 until 1948 there was a service suspension between Northern Moor and St Werburgh’s Road.

17th December: Just 24 hours after the previous incident another car got lost and ended up on the tracks at Barlow Moor Road. Again there was a service suspension from Northern Moor to St Werburgh’s Road, this time between 1830 and 1940.

24th December: A pedestrian in a motorised scooter was in collision with a tram at Wythenshawe. From 1302 to 1403 there was no service between Wythenshawe Town Centre and Roundthorn.

27th December: Ice on the overhead wires on the Rochdale and Airport lines meant no services were able to run from 0630 until 1000.

30th December: A medical emergency on a tram at Harbour City meant services were suspended between MediaCityUK and Cornbrook from 1355 to 1438.

1st January 2015: First day of the year, first car on the tracks of the year! This time it was at Broadway and as a result services were suspended between Eccles and Broadway. The suspension was in place 2130 to 2230.

2nd January 2015: Second day of the year, second car on the tracks of the year! The car was on the tracks close to Ashton Town Centre and services were suspended from here to Ashton West between 1949 and 2100.

4th January 2015: More ice on the overhead problems meant no trams could run between Shadowmoss and Manchester Airport from 0630 until 1200. Unfortunately due to a Network Rail possession it had not been possible to use ice breaker trams overnight.

4th January 2015: A road traffic collision was the cause of a service suspension between Roundthorn and Baguley from 1325 to 1356.


The reliability of the LRVs in period 8 was 17,458 MDBSF (mean distance between service affecting failures) with 30 failures. This then fell to 13,237 MDBSF in period 9 with 34 failures. The reliability issues causing these failures are being analysed. The recent dip has been blamed on underfloor traction equipment and the hydraulic braking system but other problems were experienced with both TMS and ATS equipment.


During period 8 there were 532 written complaints received (108 related to service disruption) and period 9 saw 385 (126 due to service disruption).

On the positive side three commendations were received in period 8 and 14 in period 9.


Estimated patronage in November was 2.9 million which was 253,000 above budget and 220,000 ahead of November 2013. In December patronage was also at 2.9 million (68,000 below budget but 173,000 ahead of December 2013).

* The full report can be downloaded from the TfGM Committees website at

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