Thursday, 9 June 2011

Market failure

Sorry about the lack of post last night, my internet petered out about 15 minutes after I turned on my computer. Alas!

I was going to tell you all about the cheap beauty products I got at the random beauty sample sale at work, but then this happened: NEWS! (Couldn't find a more impressive news source, as all good journalists are in bed by now)

Yes, the dreaded signal failures return.

My train was slowed to a crawl on the way into Waterloo this morning because of what seemed to be the same signal problems that they had on Monday, and when I tried to get home this evening, they were still trying to sort it out. Lots of trains cancelled, no intelligible statement of what was going on at Waterloo, delayed trains crawling between signals. I got off the train at Woking an hour and a half after I got on one at Waterloo (I had to change at Guildford which, incidentally, is about 15 minutes past Woking, essentially adding an extra half hour of pointless back-tracking to my journey).

I'm very sick of South West Trains. They have a monopoly on services in the area, and short of finding the money for driving lessons, insurance, petrol and, of course, a car, I've got no other options besides walking or learning to fly. Neither is going to get me to work on time.

Given that I pay over £80 a week for the privilege of travelling with them, I would really like to actually get an apology when something like this happens, and be offered better options than "Well, a train should be going back in that direction at some point..." This is the second time this week this has happened, and given how often they reduce services on weekends for engineering works, I don't think it's unreasonable to expect signalling problems to improve.

So, South West Trains: either improve your service or reduce your prices.

Rant over. Hopefully I will be less grumpy tomorrow! Sometimes I hate this commuting life.


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