Impact of Disruption on Rail Demand



Impact of Disruption on Rail Demand

Authors

Jeremy Shires, Institute for Transport Studies, Manuel Ojeda Cabral, Institute for Transport Studies, Mark Wardman, Systra

Description

The key objective of this research paper is to understand the impacts on passenger demand and revenue of engineering disruptions to scheduled rail services in the UK.

Abstract

The key objective of this research paper is to understand the impacts on passenger demand and revenue of engineering disruptions to scheduled rail services in the UK.

Specifically, the paper wishes to distinguish between the type, magnitude and frequency of disruption; to segment the demand impacts by relevant socio-economic, trip and industry characteristics; to identify the mitigation and behavioural response effects, such as station, route and destination switching; and to determine how expectations of the consequences of disruptions might differ from the reality.

The paper draws upon three separate surveys with a combined sample of nearly 7,500 rail users from across the UK covering all the PDFH flow types of London Travelcard Area, London and the South East, Long Distance London, Long Distance Non-London, Short Distance Non-London and Airport flows.

The study does not cover commuting trips, on the grounds that these tend to be less affected than other types of travel given that engineering works tend to occur at weekends. Moreover, commuters are hardly likely to switch out of rail in the long run in the event of anything other than major ongoing disruptions.

The analysis centres around both RP and SP data. With the former providing passenger demand diversion factors across a number of segmentations, whilst the latter provides collaborative evidence in the form of an estimated demand model. Particular attention is given to passengers' awareness of engineering works and the impact of their experience on future rail demand.

Recommendations for new demand impacts, related to engineering disruptions are provided, with a view to them being adopted by the key 'actors' in the UK rail industry.

Publisher

Association for European Transport