Saturday 6 October 2012

There was nothing much to write about last week, everything went pretty much to timetable, it rained, trains stopped where they shouldn’t, ATP failed, rucksacks got caught in doors, football managers gave away team selection details to a car-full of total strangers, etc, etc.

Over on Boris Watch someone has been busy with the calculator and worked out that if the Borisbus is loaded to its full capacity of 87 it exceeds the maximum Gross Vehicle Weight allowed under the Road Vehicles (Construction and Use) Regulations 1986. To comply with the current Regs it can only carry 78 people which when the open platform is in use will be 77 passengers and the second member of staff.

Maybe that’s why the “conductor” won’t be checking tickets, they’ll be fully occupied counting heads to ensure that the bus isn't overloaded and at least it will never be crowded as there will always be nine standing spaces unoccupied. Terrific.

Another thing that crossed my mind is just how much difference the Borisbus will make, there are only 600 on order to be delivered over three years but London has around 7000 buses, that’s not even 10%. Obviously the best way to make them noticeable would be to push them onto the routes that go through the City and West End so that they are seen trundling up Oxford Street, along the Strand and the Euston Road, sweeping past St. Paul’s and around Trafalgar Square.

However now that they will have to run at a reduced capacity one wonders just how much of hit they will they be with passengers after they have been refused entry because the bus is full when they can see empty spaces on board?

In other travel news Boris has turned down the suggestion that the Cable Car be included in the Oystercard and Freedom Pass systems as TfL were unable to predict how much demand there would be in the future. This uncertainty is in marked contrast to the way TfL took every opportunity before it opened to proudly predict that it would carry 2500 people every hour though figures from July in the weeks before the Olympics suggest that it might be attracting around 5-7000 passengers per day during the week.

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