Scots commuters face second day of rail disruption

Passengers at Central Station faced delays. Picture: TSPL

Passengers at Central Station faced delays. Picture: TSPL

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COMMUTERS today endured a second day of rail disruption caused by Network Rail track problems in Scotland - this time hitting the morning rush hour at Glasgow Central station.

Trains on many routes into Scotland’s busiest station were hit by a points failure at Shields junction in Pollokshields, where the two lines from Paisley merge.

The fault shortly before 7:45am led to trains being diverted onto other lines, which had a knock-on effect on other services, including to Barrhead in East Renfrewshire.

Network Rail fixed the problem an hour later but said delays had continued into the morning because of congestion around Central station.

A spokesman said: “Network Rail apologises for any inconvenience caused to passengers as a result of this.”

It came after a series of heat-related problems around Waverley station in Edinburgh yesterday afternoon caused major disruption, which Network Rail revealed today had delayed or cancelled more than 370 trains.

A set of points just west of the station were affected, while a speed restriction was imposed on track west of Haymarket station in the city’s west end.

Bottled water was handled out to delayed passengers as temperatures topped 28C.

Network Rail said: “In very hot weather, we experience significant thermal expansion of our points on the basis they are made of steel.

“We make allowances for thermal expansion up to rail temperatures of 27C, which is a condition we call the “stress free temperature.

“After 27C we need to monitor very carefully to ensure we are ready to make an adjustment to maintain the detection element.

“Points operations are entirely dependent on the detection aspect ,that is where one part of the mechanism is in relation to another at any given time.”

In total, more than 500 trains were delayed across Scotland yesterday - or one in five - with other problems including high track temperatures forcing speed restrictions. Trouble spots included Barassie in Ayrshire, Auchengray in South Lanarkshire, Wishaw in North Lanarkshire and Barrhead.

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