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TSSA Condemn Abellio's Penny Pinching after ScotRail admit they will miss human waste dumping targets

21 November 2019

TSSA has condemned ScotRail after the company announced that they will not meet their target to end the dumping of human waste on the tracks by 2020.

Manuel Cortes, TSSA General Secretary said, “More than a year ago ScotRail assured us, hand on heart, that they were working flat out to get their High Speed Trains equipped with retention tanks as soon as possible. Yet eleven trains are still waiting for the tanks to be fitted.

“This simply isn’t good enough. In the 21st century passengers shouldn’t still have to be warned not to flush the toilet while the train is standing in the station. My heart goes out to the workers on the lines facing the unsavoury prospect of finding human waste on tracks.

“What we’re seeing is the long-term effects of Abellio’s penny-wise and pound-foolish management of ScotRail. They grabbed a quick buck by laying off engineering staff in the first years of the franchise leaving the department permanently understaffed. Then they bought 40-year-old museum pieces from Great Western rather than invest in new trains. And they rounded it off by getting the cheapest refurbishment contract they could – with Wabtec in Doncaster rather than investing in Scottish craftsmanship at the Caley… And they’re surprised that Wabtec’s work hasn’t been up to scratch, the trains aren’t fit for purpose and their engineering department hasn’t enough staff to cope. But you can’t run a 21st century railway with pound-shop parts.

“But the real blame here lies with the privatisation system itself. If the railways were held in public ownership, run for the good of Scotland, as Labour have promised in their manifesto, then we wouldn’t see the relentless drive for profits above all else that leaves human waste flushed onto Scottish railway lines.”

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