Hundreds respond to call to share stories of rail chaos
Hundreds of rail users have already responded to a call to share their stories and experiences of using West Midlands Trains within 24 hours of a survey going live.
The West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioners (PCC) David Jamieson and the leader of Birmingham City Council Ian Ward issued an appeal on Monday asking rail users to share their experiences ahead of a public meeting.
Mr Jamieson said his office has been inundated with messages online in regard to concerns about West Midlands Rail.
Within the first two hours of the announcement, more than 150 members of public responded – with the figure rising to more than 500 within 24 hours.
Mr Jamieson said: "Within the first couple of hours of our request going ‘live’ my office had received nearly 150 responses from members of the public who use our trains.
"That figure has now risen to just over 500.
"Nearly all the communications in the past 24 hours share mine and Ian’s concerns and frustration in regard to public safety, failing timetables, dangerous overcrowded trains and platforms where commuters are often stranded by trains which turn up late or don’t arrive at all.
"I have made it clear all along that I would call a public hearing if things did not improve. These comments from the public clearly demonstrate that things have not.
"I appreciate that West Midlands Trains have appointed a new managing director to take control of this chaotic situation. In the interest of safety and the wellbeing of the travelling public I wish him well.
"However, this is not a quick fix and following overwhelming concerns from rail users I intend continuing with my request for evidence and I will be setting a date for a public hearing in the very near future.”
One rail user, responding to the survey, said: "When people just pile on, it’s overcrowded and unsafe – I worry that I won’t be able to get out at my platform, or that in an emergency, I will be in danger due to overcrowding around the emergency exits.”
Another said: "The trains being delayed have caused me to be late for work most days."
To take part in the survey, visit www.westmidlands-pcc.gov.uk/trains.