South Western Railway urges passengers not to travel today with Storm Franklin set to cause 'further disruption'

TRAIN passengers have been warned not to travel on South Western Railway services today with Storm Franklin expected to cause ‘further disruption.’

Monday, 21st February 2022, 7:35 am
Updated Monday, 21st February 2022, 7:37 am

Following a series of further incidents caused by high winds on Sunday evening, South Western Railway (SWR) is urging customers not to travel.

It comes as strong winds and a 50mph speed restriction are likely to create delays and cancellations throughout the day.

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Damage to South Western Railway trains during Storm Eunice. Picture: SWR

SWR is also anticipating further line blockages due to fallen trees, with weather conditions likely to hamper efforts to help stranded customers, and they are unable to guarantee replacement travel services will be provided.

Christian Neill, customer experience director for South Western Railway said: ‘We understand Monday marks the first day back from half term for many and we are sorry for the continuing disruption these storms are causing. It has been an incredibly challenging few days and our teams have been working tirelessly to clear the tracks to safely run as many trains as possible.

‘With more severe weather expected on Monday, we are asking customers not to attempt to travel as we cannot guarantee to get them to their destination.’

A yellow weather warning has been put in place for most of England by the Met Office until 1pm today, with strong winds predicted.

Damage to South Western Railway trains during Storm Eunice. Picture: SWR

Route director for Network Rail, Mark Killick, added: ‘Storm Franklin is set to cause further disruption on our route so we’re asking our customers not to travel on Monday.

‘With strong winds approaching from a different direction, it’s likely that trees weakened by Storm Eunice will be forced down and could block lines. The safety of our customers and our staff, who have worked around the clock since Friday to remove debris and repair damaged infrastructure, is our number one priority.

‘I’d like to thank our customers for their patience over the last three days.’

Tickets booked for travel on Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday will be accepted on Tuesday.

Since Friday’s winds of over 90mph, Network Rail have cleared more than 50 fallen trees from the South Western Railway region. Sunday evening’s heavy wind and rain caused even more trees to block the lines and further damage to stations and infrastructure.

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