ScotRail handed £265,000 in fines over train and station standards


ScotRail has been fined more than £250,000 over three months for failing to meet strict standards for trains and stations.

New figures show the franchise, taken over by operator Abellio in April, was hit with £265,282 in penalties between July and September.

ScotRail fell short in eight of 17 areas of station performance over the period, including toilets, litter, shelters and CCTV and security.

The franchise also failed to meet set standards in eight of 17 quality categories for trains, including toilets, graffiti, passenger information displays and the seat reservation system.

Cash penalties or rewards are issued depending on performance against a benchmark under the service quality incentive regime (Squire).

Since April, all fines collected by Transport Scotland are reinvested in the rail network.

Reports were previously released on an annual basis but Transport Scotland said it will now make quarterly reports publicly available.

Transport minister Derek Mackay said: "Through the Squire programme the Scottish Government is already engaged in one of the most rigorous and effective assessments of any rail franchise in the UK.

"We are pleased to be working with Abellio ScotRail to uphold and improve upon the high standards that we set ourselves by not only running a clean, efficient and safe rail network, but one that also offers unprecedented levels of transparency for the consumer."

A ScotRail spokeswoman said: "We are pleased to have achieved an overall average score of 93%, demonstrating that we are performing at an extremely high level.

"This new, tougher regime is about improving the customer experience at stations and on trains.

"The percentage targets in each category are mostly in the 80s and 90s and we remain absolutely committed to achieving these higher scores. We welcome the change that sees funds collected through Squire directly reinvested in the Scottish rail network.

"Our focus during the next quarter will be to accelerate our plans to repair station roofs, such as the work at Stirling at the moment, and to improve onward travel information as trains approach key interchange points.

"We are also spending upward of £20K each period repairing platforms and improving underfoot conditions for our customers."