Kent rail fault strands London commuters

Southeastern trains has apologised after hundreds of commuters were stranded for nearly two hours because of a fault on a line in Kent.

Passengers travelling between London and Kent faced delays following a points failure in the Swanley area at about 1845 BST on Wednesday.

The firm said it affected journeys from London Victoria and London Bridge and some services were cancelled.

Passenger Robin Emery said they were not given enough information.

'Commuters on Twitter'

"To be honest both the driver and the conductor had very limited information to go by," he said.

"All they knew was that there was a points failure problem in front of them and they were just trying to get information as much as they could.

"I tried getting on to their website via my smart phone and it seemed to be running incredibly slow.

"I think I was getting more information from the commuters themselves, and via Twitter and Facebook, than I actually was from the Southeastern website."

Southeastern said some people were taken by bus to Swanley and trains started running from about 2030 BST.

A spokesman for the rail company said: "We apologise to passengers who were delayed, due to a fault with Network Rail's points in the Swanley area.

"We are equally frustrated that this affected services, especially given recent improvements in punctuality regularly exceeding 90%, which we hope our passengers have started to see.

"We will continue to work with Network Rail to ensure they prevent and manage these situations as quickly as possible."

A spokesman for Network Rail apologised to customers and said: "We had a fault on a set of points which caused some disruption. Engineers fixed the problem."

He said Network Rail would continue to work with all train operators across the country to improve services.

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