Archive for category Tube

Tube will fail to cope with extra passengers during Olympics

Travel around London during the Olympic Games looks set to be difficult as the Tube will fail to cope with the extra load of passengers.

The Metro newspaper reported that insiders have admitted that the Tube network will buckle under the extra workload during the Games, turning the capital into a ‘laughing stock’.

One senior London Underground employee said: “It is simply not going to be ready and there is nothing we can do about it. It will not be able to cope with the extra numbers. Trains will break down and lines will be shut. The attitude at London Underground seems to be: ‘Let’s just wait to see what happens – there’s little more we can do now’ .”

The network is expected to hold an extra million passengers each day during the Games in July and August. To add to this, London bus drivers are threatening to take industrial action over the period in a dispute over pay. The drivers, who work for 21 privately-run bus companies, are asking for bonuses for driving more crowded buses for the duration of the Games. 94% of members of Unite Union voted to strike, however the ballot turnout was only 38% which could indicate that the action does not hold much support.

Transport for London is urging commuters to leave work later or find alternative ways of getting home to ease the pressure on the Underground. A spokesman said: “We’re confident but not complacent.”

Google Maps to show train travel details

Courtesy of thetrainline.com Google Maps has now launched information and timetables for mainland Britain. Now train travellers are able to search to journeys across the country here with more than 2,500 stations and 170,000 trips nationwide at their fingertips, in addition 8,000 bus stops and over 250 tube stations. The website also gives users full information on walking directions and some bus timetables for connections, as well as the opportunity to click through to thetrainline.com to book tickets.

Searching for travel information across Greater London was already possible but now internet and mobile users have access to timetables and train information for routes across the whole country.

Richard Rowson, Product Development Director at thetrainline.com said: “We’re delighted to be providing train travel information through Google Maps for the first time. We want to make sure that consumers are always able to consider rail options when making a journey and this innovation will help train travellers nationwide to do that by planning their route more easily. This is a fantastic partnership and demonstrates what two market leading brands working together can achieve.”

Ed Parsons, Google UK’s geospatial technologist, said: “Google Maps seeks to provide a wide range of relevant local information, and public transport station and schedule information is definitely a part of that. It is great to be able to partner with companies like thetrainline.com and have their schedule information available in Google Maps for the whole of Britain. This means we can reach and help a larger number of people with useful national rail train information.”

Google Maps is available in over 50 languages, so as London gets set for the 2012 Olympics and an even bigger influx of tourists, it is hoped that this technology will help them to find their way around the city and country.

Christopher Rodrigues, VisitBritain Chairman said: “We want to encourage visitors to explore the whole of Britain. With the Olympics less than 200 days away Google’s new initiative is exciting news. Millions of visitors plan their itinerary using Google maps and this additional information will act as a catalyst and inspire them to discover all that is wonderful about our great country.”

 

London Underground strikes

The London Underground employee’s union RMT has announced that members will strike four times in the space of two weeks.

The Tube worker’s will walk out on19th, 27th, 29th June and 1st July.

The industrial action has been prompted by the dismissal of colleague Arwyn Thomas and the refusal to reinstate him while he is awaiting the outcome of an employment tribunal.

London Underground claims the strikes are premature action for this case and is mystified by the union’s action; however the RMT’s general secretary Bob Crowe reacted by saying LU had “dragged its heels” which left them with no other choice.

A Transport for London spokesman said: “It is completely mystifying that, having agreed with London Underground that the tribunal process should take its course, the RMT leadership is now threatening strike action again.”

RMT drivers will strike between:

0901 on 19th June and 0300 on 20th June

0901 on 27th June and 1159 on 28th June

Noon on 29th June and 1159 on 30th June

Noon and 2100 on 1st July.

 

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Tube summer walk out

London Underground workers’ union, RMT, have announced a series of walk outs this summer, so commuters are likely to face a period of travel chaos.

Six rounds of strikes will take place through May and June, to be staged in protest at the sacking of Northern Line driver Eamon Lynch, and Bakerloo Line driver Arwyn Thomas.

There will be three strikes lasting between nine and 24 hours from 16th to 20th May and a further three from 13th to 17th June.

The exact dates are: 9.01pm, 16th May, to 11.59am on 17th May; noon on 18th May to 11.59am on 19th May; noon to 9pm on 20th May; 9.01pm on 13th June to 11.59am on 14th June; noon on 15th June to 11.59am on 16th June; noon to 9pm on 17th June.