1 in 10 rail staff unable to work due to Omicron

By Amelia Riley

With as many as 1 in 10 rail staff off work, some services have been cancelled with warnings about more disruption on its way.

Train companies have had to cut some services as staff absences rise to more than twice what they were in August last year due to the Omicron wave.

Northern Railway have published the following alert: “We are encouraging everyone to check before they travel as we are operating several amended and reduced timetables across the Northern network.

“Services are being affected by COVID and its impact on the availability of train crew, with some timetables being reduced and some services cancelled at short notice.”

The Rail Delivery Group reports that staff absences have increased from 4.4% nationally in August last year, to 11.4% now.

Northern runs services across the Yorkshire region and has faced huge pressures following around 10% of their staff being absent.

A spokesperson says: “Whilst we do operate with additional staff it can sometimes be difficult to provide cover for every service.

“Therefore we have had to make the difficult decision to reduce service levels on some routes on our network.”

TransPennine and LNER have reported similar disruptions to their services.

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