“Passenger taken ill” is the new signal failure

Public transport is indeed a torture in London.

Public transport is indeed a torture in London.

You’ve got to admit, train companies have used the old “signal failure” excuse for too long and too often. Fortunately, they have now come up with a brand new excuse for their incompetence—and that’s “passenger taken ill”.

I do get the reasoning. If you say the train is running late or being held because of a “signal failure”, the passengers still think someone’s completely incompetent or has fucked up. But if you say that a passenger has been taken ill, then it’s a completely different story.

Who wouldn’t feel sorry for the poor fella? Trying to commute to work in the morning, or home in the evening, and suddenly hit by such an intense illness that the entire train had to be cancelled. Everyone with a heart would.

Unless… unless it’s so bald-faced you can’t help but think they’re lying through their teeth again.

I mean, you’ve got to pick the time and place. You can’t use the same excuse every single day. Otherwise even the most gullible people will start thinking something dodgy is going on. Yesterday morning, Southeastern cancelled my morning train because of a “passenger taken ill”. They also cancelled a train from my station to the opposite direction around the same time for the same reason.

And today, my train couldn’t get into London Bridge. Because a “passenger had been taken ill”, of course.

This week, the only time my train has been on time was Monday morning. From Monday evening up to until now, no peak train on Southeastern Hayes line has been on time. How hard can it be then? Does one have to be a fucking rocket scientist to get the trains leaving and arriving on time? If so, then hire some fucking rocket scientists. If not, then start performing.

Being a commuter country, we desperately need a law that classifies any means of transport being late more than 30 seconds late. Because currently, you’re not entitled to any compensation from a train company unless you’re at least 30 minutes late to your destination. This is a complete joke—in some places, people get sacked if they’re 30 minutes late. Shouldn’t someone be held liable for shit like that?

Another thing that’s highly annoying is that a train can apparently be up to five minutes late until the platform display stops claiming the train’s “on time”. I mean, how the fuck can it be on time if it’s already five minutes late? Let’s not forget the time displayed on the screens is the train’s departure time. If a train isn’t there at least a minute before the departure time, IT’S ALREADY FUCKING LATE.

Considering what they charge for train tickets, it’s outrageous that they are completely incapable of providing a proper service. I am generally against regulation that fucks with businesses and their income, but since driving in this country is almost illegal, there should be very tough regulation concerning public transport, and hefty fines for being late. Perhaps then they’ll learn.

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