Archive for the ‘TV’ Category
It was the final episode of BBC’s “The Tube” this week.
Going behind-the-scenes on the London Underground, the series has revealed a fascinating picture of life on one of the world’s busiest underground rail networks.
Episode six focused on those who start work when all others are tucked up in bed.
The programme showed the work of the various teams of cleaners, responsible not only for the stations themselves but also for scraping dust and dirt from the tracks, and vacuum-cleaning the tunnel walls. Repair workers were also featured, and the replacement of a piece of track was documented.
All of these people had to work to tight four-hour deadlines, completing their underground tasks before power could be restored to the track in time for the start of the day’s service.
As is the case in many professions, it’s the “invisible” workers such as these who may not be seen publicly but make an essential contribution by sorting out any issues which could lead to problems – and potential disruption for passengers.
There’s still time to check out The Tube on the BBC iPlayer if you’ve missed it.
Last night I watched episode 2 of The Tube, the BBC series which goes behind the scenes of the London Underground.
The episode documented the work of ticket inspectors on the network, and focused on the number of journeys which are said to be made without a valid ticket.
The estimate is that 60,000 journeys per day are not paid for, costing Transport for London (TfL) a total of £20million in lost revenue each year.
And just to make any fare-dodgers feel that little bit more guilty, the quotes were carefully worded to emphasize that the lost revenue was “costing Londoners” and therefore depriving them of additional funds which could otherwise be invested into making network improvements.
But wait, there’s another side to the story! Before offering too much sympathy for Transport for London, consider the fact that over the course of a year, there are hundreds of thousands of paying customers every month whose journey is affected either by long delays or cancellations.
The TfL charter entitles customers to apply for a refund if their journey is subjected to delays of 15 minutes or more but a recent report revealed that 96.35% of passengers entitled to a refund fail to make a claim. As a result, more than £20million worth of refunds are not paid out by TfL.
So it’s not only the fare-dodgers costing Londoners millions of pounds each year, but Transport for London, too.