Gov­ern­ment ‘asleep at wheel’ on rail threat

The Press and Journal (North-East) - - News -

North-east com­muters could find them­selves stranded af­ter the trans­port min­is­ter ad­mit­ted no so­lu­tion has been found to plug the gap left by timetable changes to CrossCoun­try train ser­vices later this year.

The op­er­a­tor has pro­posed scrap­ping four trains be­tween Aberdeen and the south-west of Eng­land, via Ed­in­burgh, at the end of the year.

Scot­tish Lib­eral Demo­crat MSP Mike Rum­bles has raised fears the changes could leave peo­ple strug­gling to find train ser­vices to Ed­in­burgh.

And he has ac­cused the SNP Gov­ern­ment of be­ing “asleep at the wheel” af­ter Trans­port Min­is­ter Humza Yousaf ad­mit­ted strug­gling ScotRail would be un­able to take on the ser­vices.

Mr Yousaf claimed Mr Rum­bles’ com­ments were “false ac­cu­sa­tions”.

But North East MSP Mr Rum­bles Scot­tish asleep at re­sponded: “The Gov­ern­ment is the wheel while thou­sands of rail pas­sen­gers from the north-east and Fife could be left high and dry. The min­is­ter has more or less ad­mit­ted he is in the dark about how the ser­vice fran­chise is run.”

“The gov­ern­ment will need to get a grip quickly.”

Mr Rum­bles urged Mr Yousaf to work with his West­min­ster coun­ter­part to re­solve the sit­u­a­tion.

A spokesman for Mr Yousaf said: “The Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment has re­sponded to the DFT (Depart­ment for Trans­port) con­sul­ta­tion to say we op­pose any diminu­tion in ser­vice.”

Trans­port Min­is­ter Humza Yousaf is ‘in the dark’

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