Published: 09:20, 25 March 2020
| Updated: 09:47, 25 March 2020
Network Rail is appealing to its old staff to help keep trains moving for key workers throughout the coronavirus pandemic.
Although running a reduced service, Southern Region operations teams are keeping signalboxes and control centres open 24/7.
But with the loss of staff to self-isolation and sickness during the crisis, back up is needed.
Network Rail’s managing director for Southern Region, John Halsall, said: “This region carries half of all passengers in the country and Channel Tunnel railfreight and the pressure is on us to keep that going more than ever before.
"I’m appealing for signallers who’ve retired, left the railway, or moved on to other jobs in Network Rail that they can take a break from, to come back and help us keep the south moving.
“Under normal circumstances we have enough signallers to keep trains running whatever happens, from flu to winter colds season, but these are not normal circumstances and without signallers to route trains there will be no way we can keep the whole network open.
“So if you can help us, get in touch.”
The trains are not only helping key workers get to their jobs but also helping vital food and medical supplies flow across the country.
Controllers and local managers who are also qualified signallers are already back in signalboxes across Kent, Sussex and Wessex Routes.
Any former professional signallers interested in helping the railway should email firstname.lastname@example.org
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More by this authorEleanor Perkins
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