Friday, April 24, 2015
A 94-year-old woman is fighting for her life and her husband is seriously injured after a crash involving a minicab in a busy north London road.
One of TfL's finest, taking out a motorcyclist in High Holborn.
Letter to the Editor:
Dave Davies makes a lot of powerful arguments, and most of his letter I could have written myself. I believe the way forward is to take legal action, against everyone.The LTDA have a one million pound fighting fund, I am prepared to contribute to that on a regular basis. Let's get some heavyweight legal opinions.
Tfl will have legal obligations and duties which they are clearly failing to discharge. Uber are pursuing all kinds of questionable practices, and sound arguments have been made on this site about rickshaws. If these people are breaking the law, we can't wait for the cavalry to come riding over the hill. We sue them, now.
Demos only succeed in making us feel good about ourselves, tfl manipulate the media at these events to suit their own agenda and nothing changes.
We are running out of time.
Boris and his cronies aren't listening to us, perhaps they'll listen to a judge.
Regards, Brian Griffith.
Dave Davies makes a lot of powerful arguments, and most of his letter I could have written myself. I believe the way forward is to take legal action, against everyone.
Thursday, April 23, 2015
On exiting St Thomas St the current traffic management order (TMO), is a very short phase, only allowing 2 to 3 vehicles out at a time. The light phase is also a forced left only. This means all vehicles exiting are forced left down Borough High St. Any vehicle needing to travel north has to turn left, then make a u-turn in very heavy traffic to be able to travel north.
Cars are allowed to park on a red route in bays that are given designated parking times. The trouble with this is that large vehicles such as buses (of which there are a large number that use Borough High St), are unable to move freely north and south. One lot of traffic has to give way to the other.
There desperately needs to be some severe enforcement of the cars parked on Borough High St. Removing the bays and/or changing the times allowed to park there and also enforcing the area with wardens would keep traffic flowing freely, congestion to be reduced and pollution levels to drop.
The other issue we have as Taxi Drivers is that it's not uncommon for a large fare to be accrued before I've exited St Thomas St.
Lastly, the Private Hire Vehicles (minicabs) that park along Borough High St at the bottle neck, are acting illegally and touting for work. This needs enforcing too. TfL have just allegedly acquired more members of their Compliance Officers team. Is it possible to liaise with TfL in order to address this problem. This does affect the Shard too when minicabs rank illegally for work outside. I know Addison Lee has an account at the Shard, I'm talking about any other PHV.
I appreciate you reading about these issues. Unfortunately they affect every vehicle that accesses the Shard. Europe's tallest building built on a dead end road with atrocious access. Not a very good advertisement. The guests are shown London traffic at it's worst.
I will get back to you as soon as I have any further information.
Response From: Hatch Andrew [mailto:AndrewHatch@tfl.gov.uk]
Sent: 14 April 2015 14:05
To: Valerie Shawcross
Cc: Members Correspondence; Keane Kate; Johnson Esther (Correspondence) Subject: REPLY: St Thomas Street and traffic management issues.
Thank you for your email.
As you may know, to accommodate the redevelopment at London Bridge station, St Thomas Street is currently closed in one direction at its junction with Borough High Street until 2018.
The traffic signal timings at this junction have been set to give priority to traffic travelling north and southbound along Borough High Street and work in conjunction with surrounding signalised junctions to keep this key route flowing. The signal timings also have to be programmed to ensure that the bus services, which carry a significant number of people throughout the day, can run as effectively as possible.
That said, we have reviewed the signal timings at the junction and have been able to increase the green time available to traffic exiting St Thomas Street very slightly (in the late evening period after 20:30) to accommodate the number of taxis dropping off and picking up customers from The Shard. Please be assured that due to the high number of works and developments, and associated changes to the road network (both temporary and permanent), our traffic engineers keep all the signal junctions in the London Bridge area under close review.
Mr Crane suggests implementing an option for a right turn and straight ahead movement out of St Thomas Street. Unfortunately, this is not possible. To include this additional stage in the traffic signal cycle would require an increase in the cycle time. This would result in all traffic and pedestrian movements having to wait longer for their respective green signal, and creating significant delays on the north and southbound movements along Borough High Street.
We have a scheme proposed to improve facilities for the high numbers of pedestrians and cyclists using this junction. A diagonal crossing across Borough High Street, and advanced stop lines for cyclists are expected to be introduced in the coming year. It would not be possible to install a yellow box junction alongside these improvements, but “Keep Clear” road markings may be possible and we have committed to look at this possibility within the scheme’s scope.
Mr Crane also refers to stopping and parking along Borough High Street. I can confirm that disabled parking and loading bays operate Monday to Saturday 13:00 to 16:00 (northbound) and 10:00 to 13:00 (southbound). CCTV enforces illegal parking between Queens Head Yard and Southwark Cathedral, and Marshalsea Road and Mermaid Court. These restrictions are actively enforced to minimise instances of illegal use, but as this on-street parking is used by local businesses and their customers, any amendments including removal or amendments to timings or positions would require public consultation and the revision of the Traffic Regulation Order. We have committed to considering increased on-street enforcement in due course.
Finally, in terms of the matter raised about Private Hire vehicles in the area, we are aware of the touting and our Compliance Team will address this issue. We are also considering a change from single red lines to double red lines to attempt to address this issue. Please note however that this is subject to further investigation, public consultation and the making of a Traffic Regulation Order.
I hope this is helpful.
Correspondence Officer Managing Director's Office
Transport for London - Surface Transport
11F - Zone R3 - Palestra - 197 Blackfriars Road - London - SE1 8NJ.
An Uber customer was hit with a huge $16,000 bill for her 7-mile nightmare journey across New York.
Jaime Hessel said her driver had been on his phone, cut across lanes, and even driven down a bus lane during the 35 minute 'trip from hell' from her East Williamsburg apartment to Midtown East.
So she was stunned to receive a message from the cab-hailing app telling her she owed them thousands of dollars for the trip across boroughs.
Horrified: Jaimie Hessel says Uber billed her $16,000 for a 35-minute 'car ride from hell' - and says she's never going to trust the cab-hailing service again
The journey began on March 28 when Ms Hessel decided to call an UberX car to get to a fundraising pub crawl for cancer due to start at 1pm.
But alarms bells were triggered as soon as she got in the car to find the driver appeared distracted.
After sitting in the vehicle for around five minutes before setting off, he soon began to ignore the GPS, taking a longer and more complicated route, according to Ms Hessel.
To the passenger's terror, instead of paying his full attention to the road, the driver was also taking phone calls and checking his voicemail during the trip.
Ms Hessel claims that the car dangerously cut across lanes of traffic on several occasions and was even driven down a bus lane until she demanded to be let out early.
'I had him drop me off a block away from the bar because I didn't want to be in the car anymore. I felt very unsafe.'
But the nightmare trip was far from over.
After receiving her initial bill of $56.40, the passenger immediate e-mailed Uber Support to complain she had been overcharged and that the driver had unnecessarily extended the ride.
Within a few days, the Uber resp had written back to inform Ms Hessel the company agreed the journey was 'inefficient' and she would get a refund of $15.
But the following morning, she received a bizarre email which stated she owed Uber more than $16,000 - with a refund of $4,000. Her total, in the end, came to $12,251.49.
'It freaked me out,' she said 'I have bad eye sight and I thought maybe I wasn't reading it correctly.'
The panicked Ms Hessel quickly got in touch with the company again to inform them of their
They say it was a clerical error and that she was never actually charged the $16,000.
She added it was