UK-based railway operator Hull Trains has suspended its rail operations amid the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, which has affected passenger traffic.

The suspension came to effect from 30 March and will continue until further notice.

Due to the guidance issued by the UK Government, rail passenger numbers have decreased significantly.

As an open-access operator, Hull Trains assumes all the business risk and does not share the burden with the government, unlike other rail franchises. Hull Trains is among the three open-access operators in the UK.

Hull Trains depends on the revenues from ticket sales and can operate as a commercial service.

The company is also not provided additional financial support under the Emergency Measures Agreement offered to other rail franchises.

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Last week, the UK Secretary of State for Transport Grant Shapps stated that railway operators have the option to temporarily transition to Emergency Measures Agreements.

It is the first rail operator in the UK that has suspended all rail operations.

Hull Trains MC Louise Cheeseman said: “We have explored every avenue to try and keep trains running but sadly, it is not currently financially viable to run our services. We play a vital role in the regional economy, as recognised by our local MPs, and we fully intend to resume operations as soon as we can.

“It’s been a very difficult week for the business but the reluctant decision to temporarily suspend services is the right one based on the current unprecedented circumstances and I hope our passengers understand this. The move protects the long-term future of Hull Trains and our people’s jobs, which is important as it will allow us to reinstate operations quickly when possible.

“We will continue to review the dynamic situation as it unfolds and we plan to return as a resilient train operator for the city of Hull and East Riding as soon as we can.”

Passengers with Hull Trains tickets can travel on other rail lines on the same route and date.