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Liverpool Echo
Liverpool Echo
Patrick Edrich

TransPennine Express warns people not to travel today

TransPennine Express issued a travel warning to passengers to not travel today after more than 100 trains were cancelled.

The train company urged customers to not travel due to a "significant rostering system issue". TransPennine Express (TPE) announced through its website's journey checker that more than 100 trains were cancelled today, Wednesday, December 21.

The train company recently introduced a winter timetable to improve connectivity on some key rail routes in the north. These included direct trains between Hull and Liverpool, as well as the extension of the Cleethorpes service to Lime Street via Warrington.

READ MORE: Paramedics and ambulance staff strike in Liverpool latest as workers join picket lines

The line also runs a direct train service between Liverpool and Newcastle. But of the 106 trains currently listed as cancelled on the TPE website, nearly 50 involve services meant to run between Liverpool and another destination.

TPE has come under criticism for cancellations on its service. A Guardian investigation from earlier this year found during the October half term TPE cancelled 30% of all its trains. And just last month a total of 294 trains were cancelled in a seven day period to November 25. TPE told the Guardian the cancellations were due to train sickness, intensive crew training, and infrastructure outside the service's control.

While there is significant industrial activity due over Christmas, union members from the RMT are not on strike today. The strikes, which have already caused disruption earlier this month, will ramp up over the Christmas period with action due from 6pm on December 24 to 6am on December 27.

But TPE said today's disruption across its service is a result of an issue with the company's rostering system. A spokesperson added passengers should seek alternative transport because of the cancellations.

Kathryn O'Brien, customer service and operations director at TPE, said: "Due to a significant rostering system issue, today we are experiencing a high level of unplanned cancellations and disruption across our network. We know this will have a significant impact on customers travelling with us today and sincerely apologise for any disruption caused.

"We are working hard internally and with our system provider to resolve the situation as soon as possible. We are doing all we can to keep customers on the move but while problems persist, we advise customers not to travel and to seek alternative means of transport."

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