As pointed out by @AdamBienkov, SouthEastern have provided an explanation of why they ran such a poor service during the inch or so of snow that fell last month in the South East. I’ve tried to convert it into text, but the hopelessly blurry, badly scanned PDF file provided at the london.gov website made it even less comprehensible.
Here’s a quick summary, if you haven’t got time to read the real thing:
Why did you run a revised timetable, finished at 8.30pm throughout the piddling quantity of snow that fell?
We realised that we’d have to pay lots of money out to our customers for our lousy service, unless we under-promised and over delivered, so rather than try to put on as many trains as possible, we figured out that we could stick up some dirty A4 sheets of laser-printed Times Roman warnings, and this would allow us to wriggle out of our obligations – like this one!
Why won’t you be offering refunds to season ticket holders?
Because they’re a bunch of mugs! Why on earth should we?! They pay £1000 a year, and we don’t even have to give them a seat on our cattle trucks!* Are you high? If we started giving them their money back, we wouldn’t be able to make £61.5 million in profits!
Now that we live in the age of the internet, maybe you could make it easier for your customers to request compensation?
Yeeeassss… That’s a greeeat idea… Maybe we’ll make a little iPhone app for each of our customers? And you can click on Charles Horton’s beaming face every time you get squeezed into a carriage, and sit waiting at London Bridge for 20 minutes on a Monday morning? That’d work. If it’s all the same with you, we’ll stick with arcane system we have right now, thanks.
* Cattle trucks = “franchises focused on high density, urban commuter markets.”