RAIL commuters across the North West are being hit by delays because of a security alert and signalling problems
Trains from Manchester Picadilly to London Euston and from Liverpool Lime Street to London Euston have either been cancelled or delayed, causing knock-on delays across the West Coast Mainline.
It comes after a suspicious package was found on a train in south Manchester in the early hours of the morning.
Adding to delays are signalling problems on the Blackpool to York line run by Northern Rail.
Bosses at Network Rail have apologised for the inconvenience to passengers because of the security alert, but said that safety was paramount.
The rail depot in Longsight was closed off - causing chaos on the train network - after the bag was discovered on a carriage at 2.30am.
An investigation has been launched with support from the fire service and British Transport Police.
Martin Frobisher, route managing director for Network Rail said: “Railway staff reacted quickly to this unfortunate situation to alert the emergency services but regrettably there will be disruption to services on the West Coast main line between London, Manchester, Birmingham, Chester and Scotland and on some services in the north while we work to resolve this situation.
“The safety of passengers, residents near the depot and staff is everyone’s priority and we are now working with Virgin Trains and Northern Rail to get a full timetable in place as quickly as possible. I apologise to passengers for the delays and thank them for their understanding.”
Passengers should check www.nationalrail.co.uk or @northernrailorg, @networkrail or @virgintrains on twitter for the latest information.