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  • Why do your trains break down and what are you doing about it?

    Trains are highly complex mechanical machines with a very high standard of safety built in. Our trains have the equivalent of an "MOT" test every three days, and a high degree of preventative maintenance. Nevertheless they run up to around 1000 miles per day and do sometimes break down, although they were designed and built to do such mileage. We always put safety first, such that sometimes a train is taken out of passenger service for a reason that might appear excessive to a motorist, such as a defective windscreen wiper. There are many safety features linked to doors, signalling and breaking, any one of which can cause a train to be removed from passenger service if it is defective. Despite all this, we still run one of the most reliable fleets in the UK, with our fleet types regularly performing the best in the country according the national ‘miles per casualty’ measure, which looks at the average number of miles trains of certain types run before they break down. We regularly win the Rail Industry ‘Golden Spanner’ awards for our fleet reliability.