The only day available to test the y2k repairs on Britain's railway system is December 25, 1999 -- the only day the system will be shut down. Railtrack plans to run its test that day -- a week before 2000 arrives.
What if the test fails?
This report is from London's SUNDAY TIMES (Jan. 1).
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If you work on the railways, do not plan a large family get-together for Christmas Day, 1999. Railtrack -- the privatised group that owns all the stations, tracks and signalling -- is cancelling leave for many of its staff for that day and is encouraging companies that run train services and many of its suppliers to follow suit. . . .
Railtrack has already spent £30 million to sort out its computer systems and it is working with the other rail groups to co-ordinate an industry-wide solution. Although Philip Collings, Railtrack's Year 2000 programme director, is confident that the problem will be under control long before the end of 1999, he will not be sure until Christmas Day. "That is the only day we can test the systems because it is the only day of the year that the rail network will be closed." . . .
RAILTRACK has completed its review of its computer systems and is working on a £30 million project to upgrade them. It has formed a working party with other rail groups in which £1.5 million has been earmarked for a study of embedded systems, information systems and suppliers.