Any reader travelling with Caledonian Sleeper last weekend may have suffered inconvenience owing to major delays.
This time the delays were caused by a failure of the locomotive rather than faults with the new CAF rolling stock about which we have reported on numerous occasions.
It’s reported in The Scotsman that the MD of the Caledonian Sleeper, Ryan Flaherty (who is shortly to leave his current post) had said the delays were “unacceptable.”
No fewer than five Caledonian Sleeper services were affected last Friday and Sunday night (no services operate on Saturday night).
At 16 coaches long Caledonian Sleeper services are probably the longest trains to run in the UK.
The powerful locos used to haul the train are provided by GB Railfreight under contract.
In two cases the delays were significant. Last Friday night the Highlander from Aberdeen, Fort William and Inverness did not arrive into London Euston until 1500 on Saturday afternoon – a delay of six hours 35 minutes.
On Sunday night the Lowlander from Edinburgh/Glasgow did not pull into London Euston until 1300 on Monday lunchtime which would have been of little use for business travellers with morning appointments.
When the locomotive fails it doesn’t only mean the train comes to a halt. It also means that no power is provided to the rolling stock which in turn would affect the temperature, the showers, flush toilets and so on.
Caledonian Sleeper has promised passengers a full refund.
Video blogger Paul Lucas recently travelled on the service between London and Inverness, and reported that not everything lived up to expectations.