TRANSPORT secretary Chris Grayling was accused last night of dropping rail passengers in a damning critique of this year's schedule chaos.
An official investigation revealed that the Department of Transportation had to shoulder its share of responsibility for the large number of cancellations and delays at Thameslink and Northern Rail.
The Office of Rail and Road (ORR) said that the DfT and the industry "put technical and planning concerns before the service to their passengers".
It added that the DfT and its own teams had failed to challenge the assurances of both rail operators about the risk of widespread disruption "even though they had information and authority to do so".
The interim report from the regulator saved its biggest criticism of Network Rail – the government-funded organization that operates the rails.
But the results will put the Transport Minister under pressure.
After failing to change the timetable, thousands of trains were canceled in Govia Thameslink Railway and Arriva Rail North in May.
At that time, Chris Grayling accused the railway industry of "failing passengers."
In June, he amazed the delegates with the words: "I do not operate railways."
Brit Boy, 4, drowns in the four-star hotel swimming pool in Tenerife
Bus driver filmed kissing and groping "Teen Girl" in the cabin started as a probe
World's Worst Girlfriend Tattoo shows why you should think before coloring ink
Ali beats Britain
On a flight of 100 kilometers per hour, flights and trains are canceled, the roads are closed and the CRUISE VESSEL SHOOTS
BLOOD ON THE DANCE SURFACE
Moment Driver plows in dancer after being thrown out of the club
However, the ORR report indicated that the time when DfT officials made important decisions about new schedules and contingency plans aggravated the problems.
Stephen Glaister, chairman of ORR and the railway company, said: "The roadmap for May 2018 should provide more services and reliability, but in reality it caused major disruption to passengers." Today's report reveals the issues Network Rail, GTR, Northern, ORR and the DfT together to prevent this disorder again.
"Crucial to the problems was that good intentions and optimism within the railway industry regarding the ability to make up for lost deadlines did not leave time for problems to be uncovered and fixed. When problems arose, the schedules planners and the rail operators were dragged out were poorly equipped to help the passengers. "