Urgent Heating information


12 Nov 2016 | Phil Rogers

I found this paper whilst looking up the effects of heating on the human body:

http://jap.physiology.org/content/120/9/1047.long

Summary is that:

  • blood will flow up to 4x more than before
  • core and muscle temperature increased by around 3C
    ...all from heating ONE leg - and remember that Southeastern's heating exhausts over 60C typically.

    Recommendation

    My recommendation is that customers do NOT sit next to the windows on networker trains as this could cause adverse effects to health

    Get the message out

    Please share this post with your fellow commuters - delays are bad enough, however damaging your health and wellbeing due to Southeastern's continued negligence, and ignoring of the heating issue, shouldn't be something else to add to the list.
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    Under new management


    27 May 2016 | Phil Rogers

    Under New Management

    As I write this, the keys to Southeastern Railway Action Group are being handed to my friend and colleague at Dartford Rail Travellers’ Association - Mike Pellatt.

    For a variety of reasons detailed below, I’m going to focus on other stuff, and Mike and hopefully a few of you who can help him, can make sure that the voices of Southeastern rail users can get out there.

    And that Southeastern are properly called to account.

    But before I go…I have a few things to say

    [more]

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    Transport Committee feedback


    07 May 2016 | Phil Rogers

    There are a couple of Transport Committee Inquiries into rail related areas at the moment. If you can spare some time over the next few days then please make your voices heard

    They are:

    Improving the rail passenger experience inquiry

    Rail franchising inquiry

    Be sure to read the ‘Terms of reference’ for each in the ‘Scope of the inquiry box’

    How to provide your feedback

    Guidelines can be found here

    It should be in Microsoft Word format only (argh!) and contain a summary and your feedback - it’s important to look at the subject as a whole, and not target a particular instance - for example, it isn’t about complaining that your Delay Repay wasn’t paid for a particular journey, or that you didn’t receive a notification that your train was cancelled (I think I tweeted enough about the CHX 1801 not been announced on Journeycheck or on SER’s twitter last night).

    Also note in the guidance that you shouldn’t use anything specifically prepared for the committee without permission from the clerk of the committee. So don’t post up your response online. I’m sure you can guess the feedback that I’ll be sending them!

    Feedback will be published if it is accepted - I think it best to keep your thoughts as succinct as possible. Also make sure you follow the writing conventions in the link above.

    There’s a chance your feedback won’t be accepted - and that is also in the guidance.

    So if you can spare an hour to get your thoughts in then that can hopefully contribute to ensuring the next franchise award in the South-East area isn’t as poor as the current one.

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    Template Letter for your MP


    26 Apr 2016 | Phil Rogers

    If you’d like a template letter/email to work from, I include a generic version of what I sent to my MP, Gareth Johnson, about my concerns for how the Southeastern rail franchise has been specified and how Govia are being rewarded for, what is in our eyes, a failure.

    For full transparency I have included a copy of the letter that I sent to my MP after the template.

    Please write to your MP if you can spare the time!

    If you need contact details then this site is a great source of information to get details about your MP and councillors and send a message to them.

    [more]

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    (Updated 26th April) PRESS RELEASE - Southeastern Rail Users let down by Claire Perry


    Press Release
    26 Apr 2016 | Phil Rogers

    This press release has bene updated on 26th April after reviewing the franchise document

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    26th April 2016

    Today we finally obtained the performance data from the Department for Transport for Southeastern since the Direct Award franchise renewal began in October 2014.

    This data has, until now, not been put into the public domain, despite claims by Rail Minister back in September 2014 that Southeastern will be subject to ‘tough targets’.

    The reported PPM (http://serailaction.uk/2016-04-21-Southeastern-performance-data.html - see tables 4 and 5) shows that Southeastern have not been meeting their target Public Performance Measure (PPM) since April 2015, and the general sentiment we see on social media about the rail service is that rail users are not pleased with the service they get, with regular delays and trains skipping stations whilst leaving rail users further delayed.

    Phil Rogers today said “I have been trying to understand these ‘tough targets’ that Claire Perry proudly announced in September 2014, and have been met by countless barriers: from getting access to the franchise document, to getting PPM targets, and recently getting the actual performance data, which Southeastern Managing Director David Statham proudly declared he would be transparent on, when we spent an hour on Radio Kent on Day 2 of the renewed franchise.

    “The data clearly shows that whilst Southeastern, through their PPM (Public Performance Measure) data, have not met their targets, as far as the Department for Transport are concerned they have more than met the ‘tough targets’ set out for them.

    “The obfuscation of this data, and reluctance to reveal it, makes me wonder why both the DfT and Southeastern would be so protective over releasing this data. It shows them in a good light.

    “What is abundantly clear, is that the rail users in South East England were sold a dud back in September 2014 when Claire Perry made us believe that tough targets were in place. They were not.

    “It’s time that the Department for Transport come clean about what these ‘tough targets’ actually entail, and what steps they will now take to ensure that Southeastern rail users get the rail service that they deserve for the thousands of pounds that they pay each year for annual rail tickets.

    “In the light of this data, I also call on Claire Perry to make a statement about these ‘tough targets’, and why we haven’t seen any visible improvement in the last 18 months - she is more than welcome to contact me for a face to face meeting in Westminster.”

    The full data can be seen in the response to the Freedom Of Information request at: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/324669/response/801193/attach/4/F0013528%20Reply.doc.pdf and the analysis from SERAG at http://serailaction.uk/2016-04-21-Southeastern-performance-data.html

    After review of the franchise document, it appears that Southeastern will be rewarded for more than meeting the ‘tough targets’ set out before them - at the time when the Public Performance Measure targets aren’t met.

    Phil Rogers said “For Southeastern to profit from the misery that they inflict on rail users daily is more than outrageous. They have not met their Public Performance Measure targets in the last 12 months, yet, according to the franchise documents, have met the ‘tough targets’ that we have been sold, and being rewarded financially for this.

    “Given the £70m that is already being given to them from the taxpayer for running this franchise, further funding to contribute to their parent companies’ profits, as we see a rail service that deteriorates daily, is yet another slap in the face for rail users in South East England.

    “Today I call on all rail users to send a letter or email to their MP to express their displeasure at how our railways are being run - a template letter is now available on the Southeastern Railway Action Group website at http://serailaction.uk/2016-04-26-Template-Letter.html

    ENDS

    About Southeastern Rail Action Group: SERAG was formed in January 2016 by Phil Rogers (also co-founder of Dartford Rail Travellers’ Association) to bring Southeastern rail users together for a collective voice to air concerns about the rail service, and to amplify issues which would previously be within the realms of a more local rail group. In the space of under 2 months we have had over 500 followers on Twitter and over 100 on Facebook, and the community is growing.

    References:

    DfT/Claire Perry statement on 11 September 2014

    Claire Perry letter to Southeastern rail users

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    There were no tough targets


    21 Apr 2016 | Phil Rogers

    I want to start this post by thanking Mike Pellatt for suggesting the approach taken for the follow-up FOI request about performance data.

    It was successful, and I’m writing up my initial thoughts after just realising the FOI was responded to.

    Background

    The post about the DfT’s refusal to provide performance stats is here

    And Southeastern’s MD David Statham confirmed when we met him that he also denied the publication of this data citing commercial reasons

    [more]

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    The SE Apprenticeship Cheap Labour Scheme


    19 Apr 2016 | Phil Rogers

    I first wrote about the Southeastern Apprenticeship scheme on my personal blog here - last August

    Today I took a look at Southeastern’s career site and found a new Apprentice job…

    [more]

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    The potential for off-peak overcharging


    11 Apr 2016 | Phil Rogers

    Southeastern are potentially complicit with passengers thinking they are being charged for an off-peak, when in fact their journey is recorded as being in the peak period.

    I stumbled across this purely by accident last Friday evening.

    Read on for more…

    [more]

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    My views on the DRTA meeting with Southeastern


    01 Apr 2016 | Phil Rogers

    An audience with David Statham, MD

    At last we finally got an agreeable date to meet with the MD of Southeastern. I attended this meeting with my Dartford Rail Travellers’ hat on.

    This post covers my personal views of how the meeting went…

    [more]

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    Working better with Southeastern


    01 Apr 2016 | Phil Rogers

    After a lot of thought. Particularly about how we have written about southeastern in the past. Realistically we believe that it is better to follow the company line from Southeastern. I‘m not too happy about this but realise this is the best way forward. Look forward to the group followers thoughts on this.

    For now we’ll keep the group going.

    On no account should you unfollow.

    Only if you’ve given up the fight.

    Let’s look towards a better future.

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    Southeastern Performance Figures Petition


    01 Apr 2016 | Phil Rogers

    I’ve started a petition on the Government Petitions site to ask for Rail Minister and the DfT to make the performance data available in the public domain after the DfT’s refusal to share this under FOI.

    Please sign and share with your fellow commuters

    petition

    [more]

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    DfT not coming clean on Southeastern performance


    25 Mar 2016 | Phil Rogers

    For background to the FOI request see this post from earlier in March

    Response from the Department for Transport

    We got a response from the DfT on 24th March denying the request for the actual stats that Southeastern are being measured against.

    This request has been declined and the data will not be released.

    Why?…

    [more]

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    Complaint to Office of Rail and Road about heating


    23 Mar 2016 | Phil Rogers

    Here’s the email I sent to the Office of Rail and Road to complain about heating on Southeastern trains after my official complaint under Southeastern’s Complaint Handling Procedure didn’t yield a response.

    I’ve missed out the bit where Transport Focus are complained to as that’s just another unnecessary step put in the way of a legitimate complaint about a Train Operating Company.

    A complaint that could affect the health of passengers travelling daily on Southeastern’s Networker rolling stock.

    Read on for the complaint…

    [more]

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    DfT TfL Consultation Feedback


    18 Mar 2016 | Phil Rogers

    Here’s the feedback that I sent to the DfT yesterday for their consultation on taking over the railways in London and the Southeast:

    [more]

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    What is contactless error code 97?


    13 Mar 2016 | Phil Rogers

    I’m posting this here as it will affect a number of you within the suburban/TfL zones 1-9 part of the Southeastern network. That want to pay with Apple Pay on your iDevice.

    If this isn’t something you do, then why not read this about the TfL consultation?

    MasterCard – Apple Pay – Fare Free Mondays

    For Mondays 29th February, 7th March, and 14th March 2014 Mastercard have been running a promotion where if you pay with a Mastercard loaded onto Apple Pay, and use Apple Pay to pass through the barriers, you’ll be refunded up to £28.10 for each Monday. Terms and conditions are here

    So great, since I’m not commuting the entire week this is useful. And a good chance to try out this tech

    What happened?…

    [more]

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    DfT/TfL consultation - it has not been agreed


    13 Mar 2016 | Phil Rogers

    Bexley - Gareth Bacon

    Gareth is the ‘Conservative London Assembley candidate for Bexley and Bromley’.

    According to his wikipedia page an experienced politician who has held a varirety of posts.

    ‘the Government have agreed to transfer the service to TfL’

    I saw this leaflet on twitter today:

    [more]

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    An alarming event


    guest post
    12 Mar 2016 | Paula Robinson

    Imagine you are in a busy public building in central London. Now imagine that a loud intermittent alarm starts sounding over the public address system, with a repeated, automated, message between the alarm sounds telling you this is an emergency evacuation and you should leave the premises immediately, following the directions of staff.

    You’d leave right? Of course! And you’d expect the building’s staff to respond, by actively and professionally shepherding people towards safety, and stopping new people from entering the building.

    And later, when it hopefully all turns out to have been a false alarm, you’d expect to be told – by staff or via an announcement – that it was safe to go back inside. Right?

    Well… now imagine that the building is Cannon Street mainline station. Run by Southeastern trains. And prepare to enter a parallel universe in which a full emergency evacuation alarm sounds, and NONE of the above things happen.

    [more]

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    DfT/TfL Southeastern consultation


    10 Mar 2016 | Phil Rogers

    TfL may well be taking over - but you need to give feedback

    I meant to write this over a month ago, but….you know some things have to go on hold when you’re in hospital.

    Anyway, whilst we were all happy that TfL were going to take over Southeastern, the document that was put out there was merely a prospectus.

    Outlining between the Department for Transport, and Transport for London, how things could be improved

    But Southeastern have thrown in the towel?

    Maybe.

    Maybe that’s what they’d want you to think, that TfL will take over the metro lines within the TfL boundary, and a few other stations.

    However…the prosepectus put out bvy the DfT raised 6 questions, and is looking for your views. So if you feel strongly about Southeastern (London & South Eastern Railway/Govia) keeping the franchise after 2018, please read on…

    The deadline for this is the 18th March - a week away!

    So read on for what you need to do

    [more]

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    Southeastern Performance Data


    09 Mar 2016 | Phil Rogers

    PPM doesn’t matter, does it?

    It doesn’t.

    I’ve been obsessing over PPM and if Southeastern have met their targets or not.

    As have our MPs in a recent debate in Parliament

    So, there was me, recovering from being ill, and I recalled something, on the second day of the Southeastern direct-award franchise…the hour I had with a few fellow commuters, grilling the new Managing Director of Southeastern, David Statham

    The important part was in the second part of my write-up where I questioned the PPM figures, and David said:

    David: We’re three different sets of performance targets for the govt: seat capacity, delay minutes (in terms of those we cause for ourselves), and cancellations. There are targets within the franchise to deliver those. The new agreement also includes customer satisfaction and how customers feel…

    Three sets of performance targets.

    PPM isn’t part of them.

    So despite failing miserably at them in the last year, they aren’t the actual targets.

    So what are the targets?

    [more]

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    Clarity Over Ticket Refunds


    05 Mar 2016 | Phil Rogers

    How do refunds work?

    As many of you know, I was in hospital for unexpected emergency surgery at the end of January.

    I had a season ticket bought until early March when I was expecting to go away - there’s no point buying an annual ticket.

    So…whilst stuck in hospital, and enjoying the fact I wouldn’t have to take a Southeastern service, I was thinking…surely I can get a refund?

    And that’s when I realised that what Southeastern have on their website is lacking the information needed to get a proper refund…

    (Latest update: Monday 21st March)

    [more]

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    Formal complaint about heating on Networker trains


    29 Feb 2016 | Phil Rogers

    Today after the continuing dismissive attitude from Southeastern and the fobbing off about heating on networker trains, I filed a formal complaint. whilst my leg was roasting

    I’ll post any response on the site!

    Complaint to Southeastern

    Hi,

    Heating on networker trains is an ongoing problem, especially now they were turned back on during autumn

    The heat expelled from the floor units are sometimes about 45C and up to 80C in some cases which is surely uncomfortable for those sat next to them.

    I have already complained via my stakeholder contact but the response was typically dismissive - citing that half of customers complain it’s too cold

    Obviously the average makes it “ok”? Apart from those sat next to heating that is way too hot. As I am now.

    Please treat this as a formal complaint under your CHP. I would appreciate answers to the following:

    • are you aware of this? If so what action has been taken so far?

    • how regularly do you test the temperature expelled from the networkers and what temperature ranges do you see

    • what are your plans to increase comfort for customers

    Regards,

    Phil Rogers

    On behalf of SE Railway Action Group

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    Local Meet The Manager Sessions


    18 Feb 2016 | Phil Rogers

    Extra Meet the Manager sessions

    Southeastern today informed us of extra Meet the Manager sessions, as detailed below:

    Station Date Time
    Ashford International 19 February 5.00PM - 7.00PM
    Tonbridge 22 February 5.00PM - 7.00PM
    Grove Park 23 February 5.00PM - 7.00PM
    Sevenoaks 23 February 5.00PM - 7.00PM
    Gillingham 25 February 5.00PM - 7.00PM
    Orpington 26 February 5.00PM - 7.00PM
    Lewisham 29 February 5.00PM - 7.00PM
    Dartford 1 March 5.00PM - 7.00PM
    Bromley South 2 March 5.00PM - 7.00PM
    Deal 3 March 5.00PM - 7.00PM
    Canterbury West 4 March 5.00PM - 7.00PM
    Folkestone Central 7 March 5.00PM - 7.00PM
    Tunbridge Wells 8 March 5.00PM - 7.00PM

    Come prepared with good questions, and please share any feedback with us so it can be tweeted or put into an article!

    UPDATE: There are two sessions on the 23rd, that will be covered by two sets of Southeastern management teams.

    NOTE: these are in addition to the normal sessions listed here: http://www.southeasternrailway.co.uk/contact-us/meet-the-manager/

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    Southeastern Petition


    20 Jan 2016 | Phil Rogers

    Oli Passey’s petition to get Govia out of the Southeastern franchise…sign here:

    2014 P8-P10

    …if you haven’t already

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    Stop The Roasting


    group action
    19 Jan 2016 | Phil Rogers

    It’s time to #stoptheroasting

    I brought my IR thermometer to work today, and discovered that Southeastern were breaking HSE guidelines on safe radiator surface temperatures…

    It’s been talked about a lot on Twitter over the years, about how hot the train was…and…I think we’ve just got used to it.

    But…after my left leg being literally roasted on the Monday commute, I took some time to find my IR thermometer that helped with the #stoptheheating campaign over at DRTA, and was shocked to find this:

    [more]

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    Southeastern Performance


    19 Jan 2016 | Phil Rogers

    #Updated to include Period 9 and Period 10

    What these numbers show

    As part of the new franchise agreement, Southeastern were required to report their performance by line of route.

    The data is shown below, colour coded to show the difference between target, and actual performance.

    • White for when the target was met or exceeded
    • Yellow for performance 0.1% to 2.9% below target
    • Orange for performance 3.0% to 5.9% below target
    • Pink for performance 6.0% to 8.9% below target
    • Red for performance more than 9% below target

    As you scroll down, you’ll see the coloured cells increasing, showing how Southastern, over the last year, have slowly increased the number of targets that they do not meet.

    From Period 8 onwards (so only one set of data as Period 9 hasn’t yet been published, and is late as per Southeastern’s Passenger Charter), I’ve also included a Year on Year comparison of actual performance, to see how your line has improved, or most likely, deteriorated since the same period the last year.

    As more data becomes available I’ll repost this article and update the images

    [more]

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    Incorrect Ppm Posters


    17 Jan 2016 | Phil Rogers

    Period 9 PPM Posters or #PPMgate

    Nearly two weeks ago, as part of my work with Dartford Rail Travellers’ Association, I raised to our contact at Southeastern that the Period 9 poster they had up at Charing Cross had the same numbers, albeit rounded to 2 decimal places and not 1, as the Period 8 stats on their website.

    I also posted the details up as the first post of four on this subject ‘PPM Posters - What can you trust?’

    We were told that this would be investigated, and I kept up the pressure via social media to get to the bottom of this apparent mistake.

    A week later, our ‘Public Affairs Manager’ contact at Southeastern got back to us, stating that the figures were ‘independently audited’, and he was ‘satisfied they are accurate’. This was in the context of the ongoing conversation about the PPM posters at stations.

    I, however, was not satisfied that they could in any way be accurate, and made this statement, with a rather big challenge… ‘“Independently audited” PPM stats from Southeastern: Lies’

    [more]

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    Welcome...


    16 Jan 2016 | Phil Rogers

    Why has this group been formed?

    I guess I’ve been toying with this idea for a long time, but hearing about protests against another TOC whilst sat on yet another delayed Southeastern train, and people being interested in joining some sort of action, I figured:

    • There are local rail groups that have members
    • These members aren’t necessarily that active
    • The rail groups may sometimes not focus on the needs of the customer, but the railway (they are railway enthusiasts, in general, after all)
    • There are many people on social media groups that might not want to formally join a formal rail group, but want to do something
    • There isn’t one way to mobilise those interested in speaking out against Southeastern…at least not an independent way

    So, that evening, I put together the Twitter and Facebook page to bring people together - and within 24 hours we had reached 140 followers on Twitter

    [more]

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    Related links

    UK Govt petition to remove franchise from Southeastern
    Facebook Group
    My personal blog
    Dartford Rail Travellers' Association