Rail Passenger Rights
Loopholes must not undermine good progress on passenger rights
The European Commission has today published its proposals to updating the European rules on rail passenger rights. The Greens/EFA group in the European Parliament welcomes the moves to phase out national exemptions to ensure equal passenger rights across the EU but has concerns with the “force majeure” clause, which would exempt operators from paying compensation in cases of natural catastrophes, meaning passengers bear the full risk. Commenting on the new strategy, Greens/EFA MEP Michael Cramer, Green shadow rapporteur on the file said:
"It is good to see the European Commission equalising passenger rights across the entire EU by getting rid of national exemptions. This will put an end to the ridiculous situation we currently see, where only four EU Member States fully apply EU rules, seriously undermining passenger rights across Europe.
The Commission needs to be more ambitious on joining up modes of travel. While many companies have retrofitted trains to allow bikes on board, there needs to be binding rules to make sure that passengers in all countries have this opportunity.
We have concerns with the so-called force-majeure clause. While it is understandable that trains cannot run in extreme weather conditions, it is not fair to expect passengers to bear all the risks."