Rail disruption to continue until Saturday in wake of Storm Ciaran

Cross-border routes are affected.

Lauren Gilmour
Thursday 02 November 2023 14:36 GMT
Storm Ciaran is the latest bout of severe weather to hit the UK (Gareth Fuller/PA)
Storm Ciaran is the latest bout of severe weather to hit the UK (Gareth Fuller/PA)

Train passengers in parts of Scotland and on some cross-border services will face delays until Saturday morning due to weather warnings in place as a result of Storm Ciaran, rail operators have announced.

A yellow warning for rain is in place for the east coast, from the Moray coast stretching down to Hull, until 6am on Friday.

In the south of England and Channel Islands on Thursday, the storm brought gusts of more than 100mph in some parts, leaving thousands of homes without power, forcing school closures and causing travel chaos.

Rail operator LNER said no services will run between Edinburgh and Aberdeen until Saturday in both directions.

Its service between Newcastle and Edinburgh will run hourly from 3pm on Thursday until the end of service on Friday.

Speed restrictions will be in place on the route, which may see services subject to delays of up to 40 minutes.

Network Rail is imposing speed restrictions across parts of Scotland and while most ScotRail services will be unaffected, some areas will see delays.

Speed restrictions will be in place on routes between Aberdeen and Inverness; Dundee and Aberdeen; Inverness and Wick; and Perth and Inverness.

ScotRail said the first of these speed restrictions will be in place from 3pm on Thursday and last until 8am on Saturday.

Direct services between Edinburgh and Glasgow to Aberdeen have been cancelled from Friday morning until mid-afternoon, with passengers required to change trains at Dundee.

Services on the Far North Line between Inverness and Wick/Thurso are also disrupted while Network Rail repairs a damaged sea wall impacting the track between Brora and Helmsdale, with work expect to last until early next week.

ScotRail trains are running between Inverness and Lairg, and between Forsinard and Wick, with replacement bus services connecting journeys between Lairg and Forsinard.

David Simpson, ScotRail service delivery director, said: “The Met Office has issued a yellow weather warning for Storm Ciaran, which is expected to bring heavy rain across the east coast of Scotland.

“Our first priority is always to ensure the safety of our staff and customers, so as a precautionary measure, speed restrictions will be in place across the Highlands and east coast. This will result in extended journey times along the affected routes.

“We’re asking customers to check their journey before travel, and to keep an eye on our website, app, or social media feeds for live updates.”

TransPennine Express services between Newcastle and Edinburgh will also be subject to delays, with the operator urging passengers to check their journeys ahead of travel.

The Scottish Environmental Protection Agency has lifted half of its 12 alerts initially issued and both flood warnings in Dumfries and Galloway and Tayside.

As of 2pm on Thursday, flood warnings remain in place for Aberdeenshire and Aberdeen city, Dundee and Angus, Edinburgh and Lothians, Fife, the Scottish Borders and the area of Findhorn, Nairn, Moray and Speyside.

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