NS fined €1.25 million for poor performance on high speed line to Belgium

State Secretary Sharon Dijksma of Infrastructure fined NS 1.25 million euros for its disappointing performance on the high speed line to Belgium. Track manager ProRail was fined 1.05 million euros for not complying with agreements made with Dijksma. If NS does not meet the required performance this year, the rail company will be forced to work with competitors, AD reports.

According to Dijksma, both NS and ProRail performed better on the whole in 2016 than in the previous year. "But the high-speed line unfortunately remains an Achilles heel. This must really improve. Just like on the rest of the track, travelers on this line have right to a seat and a train running on time."

Dijksma's requirements include that during rush hour 97.5 percent of travelers should have a seat within 15 minutes of boarding and that 94 percent of trains run on time. On the high speed line to Belgium, NS scored 87.6 percent and 93.7 percent respectively. This is the second consecutive year that NS failed to meet the requirements. Last year the State Secretary fined the rail company 500 thousand euros.

Dijksma works on the "three strikes out" principle. If NS under-performs for another year, third year in a row, the company will be forced to collaborate with competitors.