Wednesday 20 Jan 2021
Videos show North West railway engineers battling against Storm Christoph
Railway engineers across the North West are battling the effects of Storm Christoph as they try to keep passengers and freight safely on the move.
Flooding is affecting several rail routes today (Wednesday 20 January) as torrential rain continues to batter the railway network.
Network Rail is using high volume pumps to clear floodwater so its teams can carry out safety inspections.
Fast moving floodwater can wash away the track foundation stone – known as ballast – making railway lines unstable.
Safety speed restrictions remain in place on the West Coast main line, routes in Greater Manchester, Merseyside, Cheshire, Lancashire and Cumbria.
With no let-up in the weather across the North West, rail passengers making essential journeys are being advised to check before they travel.
People who still need to travel by train during this period of national lockdown are being advised to check www.nationalrail.co.uk for the latest on the worsening weather and how that could impact their essential journey.
Phil James, managing director for Network Rail’s North West route, said: “As expected we’re now seeing the full force of Storm Christoph and our extreme weather action teams are working flat out to keep trains moving and passengers safe.
“I’d urge anyone who must travel for the reasons set out by government over the next few days to check National Rail Enquiries or with their train operator before setting off so they know exactly what to expect.”
Ground in the North of England is very wet from sustained heavy rain and with more on the way there is an increased risk of landslips and flooding.
Passengers are being advised that journeys will take longer than normal during the bad weather.
People should also check www.nationalrail.co.uk or with their train operator before they travel.
Passengers / community members
Network Rail national helpline
03457 11 41 41
Latest travel advice
Please visit National Rail Enquiries
Network Rail press office - North West & Central Region
0330 854 0100
About Network Rail
We own, operate and develop Britain's railway infrastructure; that's 20,000 miles of track, 30,000 bridges, tunnels and viaducts and the thousands of signals, level crossings and stations. We run 20 of the UK's largest stations while all the others, over 2,500, are run by the country's train operating companies.
Usually, there are almost five million journeys made in the UK and over 600 freight trains run on the network. People depend on Britain's railway for their daily commute, to visit friends and loved ones and to get them home safe every day. Our role is to deliver a safe and reliable railway, so we carefully manage and deliver thousands of projects every year that form part of the multi-billion pound Railway Upgrade Plan, to grow and expand the nation's railway network to respond to the tremendous growth and demand the railway has experienced - a doubling of passenger journeys over the past 20 years.