Reliability and punctuality hit on NET

As with many transport systems in the UK the months of July and August were a challenging period for Nottingham Express Transit with high staff absenteeism (relating to Covid self-isolation) leading to a fall in reliability and punctuality. The latest report to the Greater Nottingham Light Rail Transit Advisory Committee has given more details of the problems experienced.

During a two month period during June and July reliability and punctuality on NET was down at 92.91% and 91.67%. At one stage during July staff absent from work reached a peak of 53 including 30 drivers. At one point 12 of the 23 Control Room staff were also required to self-isolate and this did lead to a complete service suspension from 2030 on 9th July until the following morning. At times staff were told to self-isolate in the middle of a shift meaning it wasn’t possible to find replacements.

In addition to the self-isolation issues there were a further three major incidents which affected performance:

  • 3rd July – Wilford Toll Bridge was closed after a hand grenade was discovered. Explosive Ordnance Disposal attended and the grenade made safe.
  • 9th July – Police suspended all services on Radford Road at 2030 due to a major non-tram related incident. Trams terminated at The Forest and Wilkinson Street until 2230. One tram was trapped within the cordon and was unable to be moved until this was released.
  • 24th July – A fire broke out in the block of flats at the bottom of Noel Street. Trams again turned at Wilkinson Street and The Forest.

Services were slightly delayed on two occasions during Euro 2020 following Police requests owing to large crowds in Old Market Square. This included the final on 13th July which, as it went to penalties, affected the final trams of the night. To show the flexibility of the service though two additional tram services were sent from the depot to Toton Lane and Clifton South to ensure all passengers could get home.

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