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Monday 13 July 2015

Boris Bus Doesn’t Work - OFFICIAL

Whatever past criticisms have been levelled against what is officially called the New Bus For London (NB4L), which is also misleadingly called the “New Routemaster”, TfL has managed to bat them aside. That the NB4L was too heavy to carry its design load, it was more expensive than comparable off-the-shelf designs, the expense of having an attendant riding on the rear platform - all were airily dismissed.
So, until now, was the increasing body of evidence showing that the NB4L was unable to keep its occupants cool in the warmest weather, and warm in the coldest. Critics were told time and again either that there wasn’t a problem, or that it was being fixed, perhaps in later builds of the vehicle. But every summer, the complaints have recurred, until TfL has finally admitted what everyone else knew all along.
In response to a Tweeter called Steven, who asked TfL Bus Alerts “why are the new #routemasters so much hotter than other #buses do they not have #airconditioning very #unpleasantjourney”, it was conceded “of criticism in regards to the air conditioning. We are aware this is an issue and we are investigating how we can improve it”. Like the addicted, it has to start with the admission that there is a problem.
But there had to be an excuse to be going on with: “Thanks for the feedback. It's appreciated. Changes to current buses can't be made - future models will have better air flow systems”. And to that I call bullshit. As Tom at Boris Watch has pointed out, “it's perfectly possible to refit older buses, TfL have chosen not to, I suspect for cost/embarrassment reasons”. He also spelt out the most obvious modification.
Note that older Euro III buses have been successfully refitted with anti-pollution measures, so a window on a Roastmaster should be easy”. Quite. Unless someone is going to pretend that the window area on the NB4L is load-bearing and therefore out of bounds, the only problem with inserting a few opening windows - BR did it with trains, so it’s not unprecedented - is the damage to Thomas Heatherwick’s ego.
It’s all a long way from Peter Hendy telling the Standard more than two years agoWe found that the new bus, when the cooling is working properly, is cooler than the equivalent latest ordinary bus …  Wright’s [the Northern Ireland bus manufacturer] have fixed all the buses on the 24 and are now checking the ones on the 38 and fixing those too … It’s not a political issue, nor is it a fundamental design failure, and it’s nothing to do with a lack of opening windows; it’s a manufacturing and operating failure which has been fixed by Wrights”. It wasn’t, and it isn’t: the vehicles are not fit for purpose.
The problem now is for TfL to actually do something: what that might be, we are not told. The next step after that is to stop pretending nothing can be done about the hundreds of NB4L models already in service: if future buses can have “better air flow systems”, so can the ones now on the streets. Then Bozza and his cheerleaders can stop pretending that there was nothing wrong with the NB4L, and admit they were wrong.

We told you so, TfL. Now stop roasting your customers and sort the problem.


rob said...

Bozza's likely response? (from a source not revealed)

What's the problem? Plebian travellers get the "Tom Brown's Schooldays" experience first hand as an added extra unlike mine paid for by parents. Roasted nuts anyone?

Unknown said...

Boris is a jinx. Everything he touches turns to dust. Boris Bikes? Yes, but they were Ken Livingstone's idea.

Richard Gadsden said...

You should probably put in the first half of TfL's helpful tweet:


(alongside the second half you already have)


So the whole message is "The new routemasters have had lots of criticism in regards to the air conditioning. We are aware this is an issue and we are investigating how we can improve it."

Starting halfway through the first sentence doesn't half make it confusing.

SteveB said...

Here at "the Crewe end of the telescope" do we really care? Since London Buses are now basically a private members club accessed by an Oyster Card, which virtually no-one in Crewe has, it really doesn't matter. Let them stew! After all they elected Boris so they've only got themselves to blame. They should consider themselves lucky to have regular buses in the first place.

Tim Fenton said...

Steve, as many London buses are cascaded by their owners to subsidiaries outside London - including the Arriva operation that serves Crewe - yes, we should be bothered.

Older buses that are still good for a few years' service, although too old for London, help to make marginal services profitable. The Boris bus won't see life outside London, as nobody wants them, which is why TfL had to buy them.

And thanks, I do have an Oyster card. You can top them up on-line.

Anonymous said...

Tim, Sorry, but I'm with SteveB on this one.

I care about Oyster cards about as much as I care about Lahndan. Which is not at all.

That might begin to change if I hear even one of those spivs actively campaign for a fair country with a just culture. They could start by returning with interest the money stolen over the years from the rest of us to fund their own selfishness (now probably "enhanced" by yet another runway at RatRunRow). The usual bullshit is that it's all "private" money - which just happens to be finance accumulated around the country and then directed to Corruption City. Then there's the throwaway line that "It benefits the rest of the country too" - which is even more bullshit.

You know very well there are terrible areas of poverty in this country. And it's getting worse. Even the present Westminster gang have acknowledged a quarter of our population - that's A QUARTER OF OUR POPULATION - are living in poverty. All of this while arse heads like Bullingdon Bozo grin inanely.

I despise Lahndan and everything it stands (or grinds to a halt) for. It is everything wrong with our country. And as long as the present spivs rule the roost, always will be.

Bus transport is the least of it.

Amanda Kendal said...

So, people from outside London whine about London as though it's all full of well-heeled spins and toffs.

I'll give you a clue, boys: it's not.

But makes me wonder why anyone in London should give a toss about chavvy plebs outside of it.

I mean, if everyone in London is a champers-swilling, BoJo-voting twat, then regional stereotypes must be hunky dory? Yes?

Anonymous said...

I'll give you a clue, Amanda: Nobody in Lahndan DOES give a toss about anyone else, chavy plebs or not.

Hope this helps.

Anonymous said...

Actually many of us Londoners do care what happens in the rest of the country. It wasn't us who voted the Tories in.