Review Team Report
The Review Team met on 16 February. Among the matters covered were these:
- £360k has been spent on 16km of fencing on the FNL; a further £505k will be spent on 24km from April. In some places the vegetation "had become the boundary fencing" - a fact hitherto unknown. Animal incursion would therefore be less. There will be a doubling, from 9 to 18, of staff employed on vegetation, fencing, lineside drainage etc; 6 would be based in Helmsdale to cut down the working time spent in travel: this is a big win 6 new jobs in Helmsdale doesn't happen every day. ORR has praised the work on animal control.
- The RETB desk split was trialled last September, and was described as a "slick process". A change has to be made before full operation, mainly because 3 new signallers are needed. It will go live this September.
- Work continues to improve the request stop notification by electronic means. Funding is in place to trial using the RETB system to alert drivers to a passenger wishing to board at a request stop.
- CIS screens will be installed at all stations. Funding is in place and installation will take place this year.
- Detailed work indicates that around half a minute each could be saved by increasing linespeed into, through, and out of loops at Invergordon and Brora. Linespeed will be increased at Delny LX, and increased further once it is closed in CP6.
- There will be journey time reductions in December 2018. These were expected in May, but the NR timetabling process (based in Milton Keynes) has had to cope with the largest volume of changes ever, and was hopelessly overstretched.
- In 2017 there was a 7% increase in FNL footfall over 2016 (Kyle +3%).