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Johnson under fire as train failures cause Tube chaos

London mayor Boris Johnson was this week under pressure from London Assembly members to explain in detail a series of chaotic events on London’s Underground.

The Jubilee Line was suspended on 21 October due to a cracked rail and earlier that week two separate incidents saw passengers having to get off trains and walk along the tracks through tunnels.

Again the Jubilee Line was at fault because of power failures for the first on 18 October. The following day a defective train produced a similar incident on the Victoria Line.

In another incident, London Underground was forced to partially close the District Line on 7 October after 23 trains were taken out of service.

Small cracks had been detected on the undersides of some trains prompting the move.

The London Assembly Transport Committee has now called for a response. Chair Valerie Shawcross has written to Johnson saying that the incidents raised “serious questions about the safety and maintenance programme [on the Tube]”.

She urged Johnson, as chair of Transport for London (TfL), to “ensure London Underground raises its game”.

“The problems on the Tube over the last couple of weeks have been the worst we have seen for years,” she said. “We want assurances that things are going to get better for passengers who must be sick and tired of the almost daily disruption and wondering where it is all going to end.”

The committee also wants to know if there have been any changes to these programmes since TfL assumed control for upgrading and maintaining the entire network in June, after buying public-private partnership contractor Tube Lines.

Johnson is understood to be looking into the reasons for the disruption.

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