August 2011 in Network Rail and Suppliers
The reporter comments that bushes are beginning to take the shape of passing trains they are so overgrown. It is feared that this would create difficulty accessing the cess in an emergency such as a train evacuation.
Could Network Rail:
Response from Network Rail
Network Rail would like to thank the reporter for bringing their concerns to our attention.
Could Network Rail clear the vegetation between Inverkeithing and Montrose?
The section of line between Inverkeithing and Montrose (approximately 80 miles) has been subject to planned vegetation inspections between April and July 2011. These inspections were undertaken by the Section Manager Off-Track, and were conducted from the cab which provides for similar sighting conditions that a Train Driver experiences. All sighting for signals and signage was found to be compliant, but evidence of vegetation potentially affecting the train envelope was confirmed at certain locations. These specific locations are confirmed as being subject to ongoing assessment, prioritisation and are contained within the de-vegetation work bank.
There are locations between Inverkeithing and Montrose that are non-compliant to the vegetation standard. These are now maintenance scheduled tasks in our work management system. In line with our standard they are planned to be surveyed again next year. Further to this, specific sites within this route have been identified for tree removal and will be selected along with other sites within the delivery unit to remove. Along with this we have had an external specialist contractor undertake a survey of our assets for the identification of hazardous trees and this has created a work bank with dates to remove the hazardous trees from our infrastructure and this is ongoing as we speak.
Could Network Rail implement a maintenance programme so the problem does not reoccur?
As mentioned above Network Rail undertakes regular lineside inspections to identify any areas of noncompliance. Locations identified as noncompliant are subject to ongoing assessment, prioritisation and contained within the de-vegetation work bank.