Metro has 'busiest ever day' on date of Great North Run 2023 with record 100,000 passengers - amid heavy rain and flooding
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Tyne and Wear Metro operator Nexus has thanked travellers for their patience and praised staff and partner organisations for their help as the North East faced extreme weather conditions following Sunday’s race.
The flash flood forced South Shields Interchange to be evacuated and temporarily closed, while the Metro tunnel at Tyne Dock and the surrounding roads were also completely underwater.
This meant the Metro service had to be stopped for an hour and a half while the flooding was dealt with.
Jamie Robson, from transport agency Nexus, providing an update on post-Great North Run travel, thanked customers for their patience during the “unprecedented weather event”.
He said: “A month’s worth of rain descended on South Tyneside and the local area within an hour, putting massive pressure on our service and all of our partners.
“Once it was safe to do so we managed to get everyone moving again. We managed to clear our queue about 46 minutes later than we did last year so I think under the circumstances that was an amazing effort.
“We just learnt today that we had 100,000 passengers on the day, the busiest day we’ve ever had on Metro, so when you take that into consideration as well.”
He also praised all staff, along with partners in local authorities and emergency services, for their “incredible work”.
South Shields Interchange was left damaged by the flooding however, and work continues to take place to carry out repairs.
Mr Robson continued: “South Shields Interchange has had quite severe damage to the Fowler Street entrance, which will be closed for some time because the doors were seriously flooded, the water forced the doors through.
“There are some stand changes in the interchange but it is operating as normal as can be.”
The comments were made at the latest meeting of Jarrow and Boldon Community Area Forum on Thursday, September 14, where attendees also heard the Shields Ferry saw record numbers on the day of the Great North Run.
Mr Robson added: “The ferry had its busiest day ever over the weekend, about 12,000 passengers.
“The ferry crew were exemplary in staying in service longer than anticipated to get people away and make sure that they got everyone away from the ferry landing.”
In total the Shields Ferry stayed open for an additional hour, and after Nexus had managed the flood water, the Metro got the last of its queue away safely just before 8pm.