Problems have included:
- A fatal plane crash on 2nd January, near Stafford, which destroyed overhead power lines and caused service cancellations for a few days
- The power cables coming down near Watford Junction on 4th January, again causing a total suspension of services
- Another set of power cables coming down on 6th January, somewhere near Wembley, causing a total line closure, and
- Further power cable problems (this time in Warwickshire) today, 8th January.
Now, the first of these incidents was obviously a tragic accident, but the rest do seem to call into question the nature of engineering work and/ or maintenance of the West Coast Main Line infrastructure.
According to reports, Network Rail have set up a major enquiry into the events of this week. That is good to note - in my line of work a Post Incident Review would be instigated for events that would have a far smaller operational or financial cost.
I do not know what staff turnover is like within either Network Rail or its subcontractors, but I do wonder whether the person who has trained people how to tie up the power cables actually knows how to do it?