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Rail industry misses target over accessibility compliance

More than 1,500 vehicles have received dispensation to operate on the main line, despite not adhering to new accessibility regulations.

In total, 11 train operating companies (TOCs) have letters from the Department for Transport, giving them dispensation to use vehicles that are not fully accessible.

The deadlines for the vehicles’ removal from traffic vary through the year, and the TOCs must inform the DfT of the refurbishment or introduction of new fleets that are designed to replace the compliant vehicles every 28 days.

DfT released the vehicle identities at 1500 on December 31. The letters had been sent to the operators between November 14 and December 20 2019. The deadline for all trains to meet the accessibility regulations was December 31 2019.

More than half the vehicles (50.5%) are used by Greater Anglia, and should have been replaced mainly by Bombardier Class 720 electric multiple units and Stadler Class 745/0 electric multiple units.

  • For the FULL story, read RAIL 896, published January 15, and available digitally on Android, iPad and Kindle from January 11.

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