Tag: Transportation

Turnpike Lane Shooting: Suspected Firearm Incident At Station

Police were called this morning to reports of shots fired outside a north London station, in which a bus was caught in cross fire and a bus driver was injured. Local officers and armed police arrived on the scene at 00:24 on Friday outside Turnpik…

London Double-Decker Bus Crashes Into Front Garden

A red London Bus ploughed into the front garden of a property in south London on Boxing Day evening.The bus driver lost control and drove into the garden in Brixton around 9pm.Emergency services arrived at around 10pm and cordoned off the road. Ph…

Birmingham Airport: Flights Resume Following Air Traffic Control Fault

Flights to and from Birmingham Airport have resumed after an air traffic control fault temporarily halted services.

Air traffic management organisation Eurocontrol said that the fault was caused by a failure of the electronic flight plan system.

A spokesman for the airport said: “Following the earlier air traffic control technical fault, Birmingham Airport has now resolved the issue and operations have now resumed.

“We thank passengers for their patience and apologise for any inconvenience this has caused.”

The fault follows days of chaos at Gatwick airport, after reported drone activity brought operations to a standstill.

Chris Grayling’s Stint As Transport Secretary Mauled By MPs In Damning Report

MPs have given a damning verdict of Chris Grayling’s tenure as transport secretary, saying he should have been more proactive in preventing this year’s train timetable chaos.

In a scathing report about timetable changes in May, the Transport Select Committee said the “chaotic rollout” of changes to services in May should be the catalyst for “genuine change” for people who rely on the railways.

The committee said passengers most affected by the delays and cancellations should receive a discount on 2019 tickets.

The MPs said the minister could not absolve himself of all responsibility for the chaos, although it acknowledged Grayling was not fully informed of the serious problems caused by the changes.

Last week’s announcement that rail fares will increase by an average of 3.1% added “insult to passengers’ injury”, said Lilian Greenwood, who chairs the committee.

She added: “It is extraordinary, and totally unacceptable, that no-one took charge of the situation and acted to avert the May timetabling crisis.

“Instead of experiencing the benefits of much-needed investment in our railways, around one in five passengers experienced intensely inconvenient and costly disruption to their daily lives.

“There was extraordinary complacency about protecting the interests of passengers, who were very badly let down”. 

National rail timetabling needed “genuinely independent” oversight, located outside Network Rail, to avoid being affected by commercial and political pressure, said the committee.

All passengers affected by the May timetabling disruption were badly let down by the system, but people with sensory, mobility and other impairments were disproportionately affected, said the report.

Alex Hayman of consumer group Which? said: “The report provides yet more evidence that no-one took responsibility for fixing the timetable mess and that blame for the appalling delays, cancellations and lack of information endured by passengers goes right to the top.”

The report said the disruption led to a prolonged period of inconvenient, costly and potentially dangerous disruption for passengers across the north of England, London and the south.

Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) failed to run 12% of its planned service in the weeks following May 20, Arriva Rail North did not run around 11% of its trains, and there was a knock-on impact on TransPennine Express, said the report.

There was a collective, system-wide failure across Network Rail, the train operators, Transport Department and the ORR, and “nobody took charge”, said the MPs.

A Department for Transport spokesman said: “We have already worked with the industry to deliver special compensation schemes on Northern, TransPennine Express and GTR, which provides the equivalent of up to 8% of the cost of an annual season ticket for those most severely impacted.

“The disruption following the May timetable change demonstrated that significant change is required in the rail industry.

“That is why we launched the Williams review to consider all parts of the industry in order to put passengers first, with reforms to begin from 2020.”

Rail Fares Set To Cost Passengers 3.1% More In 2019

Britain’s rail fares are set to increase by an average of 3.1% on January 2, the rail industry announced.

According to Office of Rail and Road data, it will be the largest price hike since January 2013.

Many long-distance commuters will see the annual cost of getting to work increase by more than £100.

Paul Plummer, chief executive of industry body the Rail Delivery Group (RDG), said: “Nobody wants to pay more to travel, especially those who experienced significant disruption earlier this year.

“Money from fares is underpinning the improvements to the railway that passengers want and which ultimately help boost the wider economy.

“That means more seats, extra services and better connections right across the country.”

There have been calls for prices to be frozen following chaos caused by the implementation of new timetables in May.

Fewer than half (45%) of passengers are satisfied with the value for money of train tickets, according to a survey by watchdog Transport Focus.

The news follows a summer of transport chaos with train staff staging strikes amid an ongoing dispute between rail operators and the RMT Union over keeping rail guards on trains.

New Figures Reveal Bikers Are 63 Times More Likely To Be Seriously Injured On UK Roads

A woman almost killed while cycling to work has made a plea for tougher penalties for drivers, as new figures reveal cyclists and motorcyclists are 63 times more likely to be killed or seriously injured than people in vehicles.

Victoria Lebrec, 28, had to have her left leg amputated after being hit by a lorry in 2014. She only survived due to pioneering medical treatment at the roadside. She believes there should be tougher penalties for drivers who seriously injure people on bikes. 

New analysis by the road safety charity Brake shows cyclists and motorcyclists account for almost four in 10 of all deaths and serious injuries on British roads. In 2017, a total of 9,740 people were killed or injured on a bike – an average of one every hour.

There were a total of 101 cyclist deaths and 349 motorcyclist deaths in 2017.

Victoria Lebrec having rehabilitation and learning to walk again after losing her leg.

Lebrec was 24 when she was crushed by a skip lorry“When I was told about losing my leg, I felt grief as I could not imagine what my future was going to be like after such a life changing injury,” she said. After recovering, Lebrec went to a rehabilitation hospital and learned to walk again using a prosthetic leg.

The lorry driver involved in the crash was charged with careless driving and received a £750 fine and points on his licence.

Lebrec told HuffPost UK: “I met the driver in court and it was emotional as he was so sorry and clearly never intended for it to happen.

“But it is frustrating that there is not a charge for causing serious injury by careless driving. There’s either careless driving or death by careless driving.

“But someone can be left alive and seriously injured and the severity of what they suffered is not represented in the punishment.”

Lebrec now works as a campaigner for RoadPeace, the national charity for road crash victims. She says the Ministry of Justice has proposed to introduce a new offence of causing serious injury by careless driving, but it hasn’t yet happened.

Victoria Lebrec skiing before the crash which changed her life

Road safety charity Brake has criticised the Government for not acting on their pledge to increase sentences for dangerous and careless driving made more than a year ago.

Joshua Harris, director of campaigns for Brake, said: “Drivers who kill or seriously injure all too often receive lenient sentences. By delaying the introduction of new tougher sentences, the Government is causing further suffering to families who have lost loved ones in road crashes.

“The Government must implement these tougher sentences as first priority, delivering on their promise to road crash victims and then initiate a review of the flawed legal framework for road justice.”

A Ministry of Justice spokesman said: “Killer drivers ruin lives and the government is committed to making sure that the courts have sufficient powers to deal with driving offences appropriately and proportionately.

“We will bring forward proposals for changes in the law as soon as parliamentary time allows.”

Indonesia Lion Air Plane Crashes Into Sea With 189 On Board

Indonesian officials are “not expecting survivors” from the plane carrying 189 people that crashed into the sea near Jakarta.

Indonesia’s search and rescue agency confirmed the crash of Lion Air flight, JT610, adding that it lost contact with ground officials 13 minutes after takeoff, and a tug boat leaving the capital’s port saw it fall.

After crashing into the sea, the aircraft sank. Rescue officials said they had recovered some human remains from the crash site, about 15 km (9 miles) off the coast.

The airline said the brand-new aircraft, a Boeing 737 MAX 8, on an hour-and-10-minute flight to Pangkal Pinang on an island chain off Sumatra, was carrying 181 passengers, including one child and two babies, and eight crew members.

Earlier, agency head Muhmmad Syaugi told a news conference that no distress signal had been received from the aircraft’s emergency transmitter.

However, the pilot had asked to return to base (RTB) after the plane took off and is thought to have been trying to circle back to the capital, Jakarta when it went down.

At the time of the news conference on Monday morning, Syaugi said they didn’t know whether there would be any survivors.

“We hope, we pray, but we cannot confirm … We are there already, our vessels, our helicopter is hovering above the waters, to assist,” Syaugi said. “We are trying to dive down to find the wreck.”

Ambulances were lined up at Karawang, on the coast east of Jakarta and police were preparing rubber dinghies, a Reuters reporter said. It’s now looking likely the ambulances will not be used for survivors. 

Distraught friends and relatives prayed and hugged each other as they waited for news of their loved ones at Pangkal Pinang’s airport on Monday.

Others headed to the agency’s headquarters in Jakarta, hoping desperately for news.

Feni, who uses a single name, said her soon to be married sister was on the flight, planning to meet relatives in Pangkal Pinang.

“We don’t have any information,” she said, as her father wiped tears from reddened eyes. “No one provided us with any information that we need. “We’re confused. We hope that our family is still alive,” she said.

Relatives began to gather at the airport on Monday

The National Search and Rescue Agency’s deputy chief, Nugroho Budi Wiryanto, said some 300 people including soldiers, police and local fishermen are involved in the search and that so far it has recovered no bodies — only identity cards, personal belongings and aircraft debris.

Crushed smartphone, books, bags and parts of the Lion Air jet’s fuselage have been collected by search and rescue vessels.

At least 23 government officials were on board the plane, which an air navigation spokesman said had sought to turn back just before losing contact.

“We don’t dare to say what the facts are, or are not, yet,” Edward Sirait, the chief executive of Lion Air Group, told Reuters. “We are also confused about the why, since it was a new plane.”

The privately owned airline said in a statement, the aircraft, which had only been in operation since August, was airworthy, with its pilot and co-pilot together having accumulated 11,000 hours of flying time.

Saat ini tim SAR Basarnas melakukan penyelaman dikoordinat 05 derajat 90′ 361″ S – 107 derajat 06′ 618″ E untuk mencari pesawat Lion Air JT 610 yang jatuh di perairan Karawang Jawa Barat. pic.twitter.com/XK0UiSKyfH

— Sutopo Purwo Nugroho (@Sutopo_PN) October 29, 2018

The head of Indonesia’s transport safety committee said he could not confirm the cause of the crash, which would have to wait until the recovery of the plane’s black boxes, as the cockpit voice recorder and data flight recorder are known.

“The plane is so modern, it transmits data from the plane, and that we will review too. But the most important is the blackbox,” said Soerjanto Tjahjono.

Safety experts say nearly all accidents are caused by a combination of factors and only rarely have a single identifiable cause.

The weather at the time of the crash was clear, Tjahjono said.

Investigators will focus on the cockpit voice and data recorders and building up a picture of the brand-new plane’s technical status, the condition and training of the crew as well as weather and air traffic recordings.

The effort to find the wreckage and retrieve the black boxes represents a major challenge for investigators in Indonesia, where an AirAsia Airbus jet crashed in the Java Sea in December 2015.

Under international rules, the US National Transportation Safety Board will automatically assist with the inquiry into Monday’s crash, backed up by technical advisers from Boeing and US-French engine maker CFM International, co-owned by General Electric and Safran.

Boeing was deeply saddened by the loss, it said in a statement.

“Boeing stands ready to provide technical assistance to the accident investigation,” it said, adding that in accordance with international protocol, all inquiries should be directed to Indonesia’s National Transportation Safety Committee.

Debris from the plane has been sound in the sea.

The crash is the worst airline disaster in Indonesia since an AirAsia flight from Surabaya to Singapore plunged into the sea in December 2014, killing all 162 on board.

Indonesian airlines were barred in 2007 from flying to Europe because of safety concerns, though several were allowed to resume services in the following decade.

The ban was completely lifted in June this year. The US lifted a decade-long ban in 2016.

Lion Air, a discount carrier, is one of Indonesia’s youngest and biggest airlines, flying to dozens of domestic and international destinations.

In 2013, one of its Boeing 737-800 jets missed the runway while landing on the resort island of Bali, crashing into the sea without causing any fatalities among the 108 people on board.