The introduction of the Class 484 electric multiple units on the Isle of Wight has been delayed due to what manufacturer Vivarail calls ‘software issues’. It is the second delay in introduction of the fleet, the first of which was delivered to the island several months ago.
The trains, rebuilt from former London Underground ‘D78’ stock, were due to be delivered before Easter, but their eventual operator, South Western Railway now expects to start operation later this summer. Bus replacement services are being doubled in capacity from 17 May.
Vivarail Chief Executive Adrian Shooter explained that the train’s software had to be changed to enable it to operate on a third rail system rather than London Underground’s four rails, and said he had instructed his team to thoroughly review the system rather than attempt to ‘patch’ it.
He paid tribute to Bombardier, Arriva, Network Rail and SWR for their assistance in developing the train.
While No 484001 is on the Isle of Wight, the remainder, Nos 484002-005 are at Eastleigh awaiting transport over the Solent.