Height bungles delay Edinburgh-Glasgow rail upgrade


Electrification of the key 67km Scottish mainline rail link between Edinburgh and Glasgow is being severely delayed because of mistakes.

Workers have set new overhead power cables and bridge walls that run through stations too low to meet national safety standards.

A recent report from industry regulator the Office of Rail and Road (ORR) has insisted on several sections of the work being replaced in order to meet Network Rail specifications, and on the addition of more effective safety screening for lineside infrastructure.

Edinburgh-Glasgow line works included Queen Street, Glasgow

The corrective action will further increase the current £32m-plus overspend on the project, which was originally costed at £742m and aims to deliver faster services on the most direct route between the two cities, with longer trains that will increase passenger capacity by 30%.

Scottish transport minister Humza Yousaf has admitted that the planned upgrade in services is not now expected to become operational before December at the earliest – at least seven months behind schedule. He has yet to put a figure on the increased cost.

Labour transport spokesperson Neil Bibby MSP said: 'There are serious questions to be asked about how investment in our rail infrastructure is being delivered.'

A Network Rail Scotland spokesperson said: 'To get things back on track, we have now pulled together all of Scotland’s electrification schemes under a single management team, so as better to oversee our limited resources, improve productivity and iron-out procurement delays.'

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