After another round of train delays and cancellations, the leaders of both state railroad BaneNor (formerly Jernbaneverket) and railway NSB have apologized to passengers and especially commuters in the Oslo area. They also claim service will improve.
“We’re sorry there have been so many delays this autumn,” Geir Isaksen, chief executive of NSB, told reporters after a meeting with BaneNor. BaneNor is responsible for railroad infrastructure, and most of the delays have been caused by signal failure and other problems tied to equipment and maintenance. It’s NSB, however, that has to deal with angry and frustrated passengers, and arrange alternative transportation, most often with bus.
Isaksen admitted that the delays in August and September were “unacceptable,” making thousands of people late for work. “But I think everyday punctuality will be better from now on,” he said, adding that BaneNor clarified the reasons for the delays. He said he had confidence the problems would not be repeated.
“It’s important that we don’t allow maintenance to be ignored,” Isaksen said. He cautioned, though, that major improvement projects that require construction can cause temporary disruption. The state is investing billions in a major boost for public transport.