Unfortunately Southern Railway has lost the trust of most or many of its customers by giving disinformation.
If there are to be two staff members on a train, the person responsible for safety should be the more mobile as he/she is capable of getting the best view of the train. That person can see when a passenger’s clothing is stuck in the doors potentially leaving to be pulled along the platform with the train moving away. Because of lighting direction or otherwise obscured CCTV ‘reception’ there is always doubt that the driver has that complete vision.
Frankly it makes no difference to modernisation, as Southern put it, which a member of staff has the duty. It makes all the difference to passenger safety.
What really has prompted this proposed change is that the new rolling stock is not compatible with a guard or conductor performing the safety conscious role of ensuring passenger safety. It is a design based on the premise that Driver Only Operation is safe on main line operation. In that your staff, who do the job on a daily basis, know that it’s unsafe, it is a design fault.
I have to ask, should the DfT and Southern somehow manage to defeat the staff common sense on this and allow DOO, how many injuries, maimings and deaths will it take to persuade both parties that they have made a grave error of judgement?