Transdev provides buses for Rio athletes’ welcome parade

first_imgThe homecoming of Yorkshire’s Rio heroes was celebrated on 28 September with an open-top bus parade through the heart of Leeds.Transdev supplied three of the open top buses for the parade, as well as its golden ‘36’ bus, named after Olympic diving champion, Jack Laugher.The athletes on board Trandev’s ‘36’ golden bus for their homecoming receptionThe parade, organised by Welcome to Yorkshire and Leeds City Council, was broadcast live nationally and around the world.Thousands of people came out in force, creating a carnival atmosphere and lining the streets along the parade route to welcome home the athletes.After the parade, Jack and a whole host of heroic athletes travelled from the city square to the Civic Hall for a homecoming reception – with the golden bus as their mode of transport, driven by ‘36’ team leader Tim Wilbur.They posed for photos on board the bus, with no fewer than 23 Olympic and Paralympic medals represented in one incredible picture.The gold ‘36’ bus will be officially unveiled at a special ceremony for Jack, to be held outside the town hall in his hometown of Ripon.last_img read more

‘Thorough review’ of testing call, over lack of test slots

first_imgThe Freight Transport Association (FTA), is calling on the Government to undertake a comprehensive review of the MoT market and the way the test is delivered. It comes amid a severe shortage of DVSA testers leading to very long waits for test slots, especially in the south east.The position is made worse as the pay rates for testers are significantly lower than market rates for mechanics with suitable skills, meaning recruitment is not filling the vacancies.FTA’s Director of Policy Elizabeth de Jong says: “Currently, DVSA is not measuring the factors that indicate whether vehicle testing processes are delivering or not, for operators and legislators.”She also suggests the Earned Recognition-status operators should be allowed to conduct their own tests. “We are calling for a full review of the testing function at DVSA and proper consideration of independent testing.”The FTA is also calling on the DVSA to produce KPIs in seven areas to demonstrate the system’s delivery, that would “better inform both DVSA and the industry on the difficulties experienced and how to solve them.”CPT’s Operations Director, Keith McNally told routeone: “CPT continues to work closely with DVSA and several trade associations representing the freight and ATF sectors to develop practical solutions to the on-going difficulties relating to vehicle testing availability. “CPT believes that industry self-testing could form part of an overall solution, but we would want to ensure that safety standards for commercial passenger transport continue to be maintained at the very highest level.”last_img read more

FirstGroup employees support Action for Children

first_imgA month-long fundraising drive by FirstGroup employees has helped raise almost £10,000 for the Action for Children charity.FirstGroup employees raising funds for Action for ChildrenHeld to mark the first six months of a three-year charitable partnership, events organised by the transport operator’s charity champions place took place around the UK and raised more than £6,800. Activities included cake sales, auctions, a bake off, cake sales, a second-hand book sale and static cycle rides.The final amount raised for Action for Children will be almost £10,000 due to FirstGroup’s matched funding scheme.last_img

Consultation ‘flops’: Back to start point

first_imgA consultation by the Traffic Commissioners (TCs) on whether the amount of financial standing required by restricted licence holders should be altered, received just 10 responses. The rate, £3,100 for the first vehicle and £1,700 for the second, has not changed since 2004.The TCs say “further engagement” is now required, before making a final decision.last_img

Call for one-year testing exemption for ‘highly compliant’

first_imgThe difficulty of returning heavy vehicle testing to normal in the wake of a temporary halt earlier this year has been underlined by a call from the Freight Transport Association (FTA) for a long-term “resilient solution”  that involves a one-year exemption for highly compliant operators.FTA says that a backlog of up to 250,000 heavy vehicle tests will be caused by DVSA’s decision to temporarily remove its staff from Authorised Testing Facilities (ATFs) in March. Testing has since resumed, but at a reduced capacity.As a result, FTA has written to Transport Minister Baroness Vere to request that highly compliant operators, such as those that are members of DVSA’s Earned Recognition scheme or those with a green OCRS score, can move from the current short exemption period to a one-year exemption. FTA has confirmed that its proposal for a one-year exemption captures PSVs.“Demand can be relieved if the government says that under these extreme circumstances, the lowest risk operators – and particularly those that qualify for Earned Recognition – should be taken out of the system for 2020,” says Head of Road Freight Regulation Policy James Firth. “Otherwise, we fear that the testing system will not cope.”One-year testing exemption avoids worst case scenario: FTAMr Firth adds that in a worst-case scenario, temporary exemptions may have to be issued for such a length of time that some high-risk operators’ vehicles could go without a test for 24 months.An earlier communication from DVSA had indicated that it plans to continue issuing three-month temporary exemptions until March 2021.Under those proposals, heavy vehicles that come due for test as part of their normal schedule until the end of March 2021 will be awarded one three-month extension. Of those that have already been issued exemptions, only those originally due for test in April 2020, and those due in March 2020 that were not tested, will receive two extensions, to October and September respectively.The plans from DVSA show that from April 2021, no further exemptions will be awarded and that the testing schedule will return to normal from that point.The ATF Operators Association (ATFOA) has repeatedly called into question whether DVSA will be able to supply enough testing capacity in months where exemptions mean that an inflated number of tests will fall due.The Confederation of Passenger Transport (CPT) has previously suggested that testing capability will be constrained into the autumn. CPT has said that with steps in place to mitigate coronavirus COVID-19, testing capacity runs at around 75% of the norm.DVSA has not confirmed that it shared with at least one trade association its proposals to continue issuing temporary exemptions until March 2021. But the Business and Planning Bill – introduced in late June – contains a clause that would simplify that process.Support for legislative change to permit delegated testingATFOA has continued to advocate the introduction of delegated testing. Under that process, a suitably qualified technician employed by the ATF would carry out the task. It says that if adopted, delegated testing would help to return the backlog to normal by September.Its efforts to secure delegated testing are being supported by Lord Attlee. He has tabled an amendment to the Business and Planning Bill that would permit the Secretary of State for Transport to designate individuals employed by ATFs to carry out testing on some heavy vehicles. That amendment is to be resubmitted to allow delegated testing for PSVs.Speaking to routeone, Lord Attlee says that changes to compliance levels and vehicle standards within the road transport industry mean that there should be no issue with a competent person who is not a DVSA employee undertaking testing.ATFOA Chairman Stephen Smith notes that the odds are against the legislation being changed to allow delegated testing. However, but he says that the Association will continue to highlight what it believes is DVSA’s “flawed logic” of allowing only its own staff to test heavy vehicles.last_img read more

NAT Group to launch Cardiff Fflecsi DRT on 29 June

first_imgNAT Group is to trial a demand responsive transport (DRT) service in Cardiff called Fflecsi. The pilot will start on 29 June and last for three months. It will replace the operator’s existing scheduled G1 service between Gabalfa and Gwaelod y Garth.The trial follows the Fflecsi concept’s successful introduction in other parts of Wales. Customers will request a pick-up from stops along the G1 route via app or by contacting a customer call centre.Says NAT Group Managing Director Adam Keen: “With current restrictions limiting passenger numbers, public transport companies are having to continually adapt their offerings. NAT Group is going above and beyond to improve our service and to create new provisions for both existing and potential customers.“This is the first DRT trial in Cardiff, and pleasingly NAT Group is at the forefront of innovation. We are committed to finding new ways of travelling for those who live and work in South Wales.”The Fflecsi pilot in Cardiff will be provided in partnership with Cardiff Council and Transport for Wales (TfW). It will utilise a branded Optare Solo.TfW Chief Executive James Price adds: “Fflecsi is an exciting trial for us as we continue to transform public transport in Wales. The pilot will offer the opportunity to look at a new way of operating, and in the current circumstances, it will allow bus companies to move people while maintaining a social distance.”Earlier in June, NAT Group launched its TrawsHafren service between Chepstow and Bristol. It operates to a fixed timetable, but it also allows customers to pre-book seats in advacelast_img read more

Obituary: Frank Ritchie

first_imgFrank at Metrobus/Southlands travel circa 1996Frank Ritchie, Operations Manager at Go Coach Hire, Sevenoaks, died suddenly on 4 October. He was 65.Frank distinguished himself through various roles in the coach and bus industry over the past 40 years, managing daily operations at Go Coach Hire in Sevenoaks for the last seven.Beginning his career as a bus driver in his native city of Aberdeen, Frank progressed to the coach industry as a Scottish Citylink driver, which took him across the UK.In 1987 he settled in England, where he joined Metrobus during a period of rapid development. He soon became a favourite entertainer among excursion and holiday passengers, and with his outgoing personality and sense of humour grew popular at hotels, tearooms and coach stops across Britain.With these customer relations and HR management skills, Frank joined the management team at Metrobus Southlands Travel in 1998.In 2003, Frank became a partner of ‘Plan-it Travel with John’ followed by time at DJ coaches of Gravesend, until he joined the team at Go Coach hire in 2013 alongside an old friend, Austin Blackburn.Frank has been described as a ‘real family man,’ with a ‘large family whom he loved dearly’ and who will sorely miss him back. He has also been described as sociable, with a great circle of friends, who consider it a privilege to have known him and enjoyed their friendship.“Frank and his family have been personal friends of mine for over 20 years,” says Go Coach Managing Director Austin Blackburn. “He brought his unique skills and qualities to our growing business and had an amazing rapport with the drivers, and more recently the Go2 customers, on the phone.  He was a larger than life character and will be missed not just by his family, but also everyone here at Go Coach.”last_img read more

Zipabout incentivises bus use by linking operators with brands

first_imgTechnology company Zipabout has created a platform that it claims will incentivise bus use by connecting operators with brands, businesses and retailers and providing rewards for passengers.Zipabout says that the solution improves the bus passenger experience and loyalty by offering rewards and a ‘thank you’ for returning to public transport. It can also incentivise behaviour by managing passenger flow around busy times or encouraging off-peak travel. The product is delivered to passengers by what Zipabout calls “a trusted channel,” which can include the operator’s app.A pre-Christmas lockdown trial was undertaken in Oxford with EagleEye Solutions and its AIR digital marketing platform to enable in-store reward redemption. Zipabout collaborated with a large café chain and Oxfordshire County Council’s Oxontime bus information service across Stagecoach and Oxford Bus Company (OBC).Passengers using OBC’s Oxontime Connect on Messenger received a ‘thank you for travelling’ message and they were offered a free hot drink at their local café chain. At the end of their journey they received a unique QR code and directions to their nearest store to redeem it.Says Zipabout CEO Alex Froom: “Zipabout’s real-time personalised information service already helps passengers to travel easily and safely. It can now connect operators with brands and retailers, empowering them to reward and incentivise sustainable travel and help to kickstart a green-led economic recovery from the COVID-19 crisis.”Adds OBC Managing Director Phil Southall: “Zipabout’s technology means that we are able to work with retailers and local hospitality businesses to reward our mutual customers and help to encourage footfall back to our local high streets.“This will be a really useful tool in helping us to support our communities’ recovery from the pandemic. We are already thinking about how me might be able to extend the use of this technology further.”More information.last_img read more

ND Game will feature F16s and a special musical guest

first_img ND Game will feature F16s and a special musical guest WhatsApp Facebook Pinterest Twitter By Tommie Lee – October 4, 2019 1 371 Facebook Google+ A group of F-16 fighter jets fly over Kyle Field in College Station, Texas before the start of an NCAA college football game between Lamar and Texas A&M on Saturday, Sept. 14, 2019. (AP Photo/Sam Craft) Notre Dame fans will get a couple of special treats at Saturday’s home game against Bowling Green on Oct. 5.The ceremonial flyover before the football game will feature four US Air Force F-16s. The Flying Falcons are stationed out of Toledo, Ohio and will honor America during the pregame ceremonies.Then at halftime, fans will be treated to a performance by the rock band Chicago, performing alongside the Notre Dame Marching Band.The game kicks off at 3:30 p.m. and if you’re not in the stands you can catch it on NBC. WhatsApp Google+ Twitter Pinterest IndianaLocalNewsSouth Bend Market Previous articleDriver injured after tanker rolls, bursts into flamesNext articleWestville Correctional Facility staff member arrested for trafficking drugs, cell phones Tommie Leelast_img read more

Missing work release offender in Noble County back in custody

first_img Facebook Facebook Google+ Twitter IndianaLocalNews Google+ Pinterest Twitter WhatsApp WhatsApp Joseph Stevens. (Photo Provided: Noble County Sheriff’s Office) UPDATE: Joseph Stevens was located and was placed back into custody. He faces additional charges.ORIGINAL STORY: The Noble County Sheriff’s Department is looking for a work release offender who failed to show up at his scheduled time.Joseph Stevens, 34, failed to return to lawful detention after being out on a pass. He left around 11:42 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 28, for a four-hour pass to a residence in Avilla. He was scheduled to report back around 4 p.m. that same day.Stevens is described as a white male, with brown hair, blues eyes, 6 feet 2 inches and weighs 223 pounds. Stevens has several tattoos on his face, neck and arms. He was last seen wearing a tan jacket, black t-shirt, blue jeans and brown boots. He may have possibly gotten into an older white sedan.If anyone has any information on the whereabouts of Joseph Stevens, contact the Noble County Sheriff’s Department or any other law enforcement agency. Missing work release offender in Noble County back in custody Pinterest By 95.3 MNC – December 31, 2019 0 235 Previous articleReport: Indiana environmental agency budget loses $35MNext articleSemi trailer dangling off edge of toll road overpass 95.3 MNCNews/Talk 95.3 Michiana’s News Channel is your breaking news and weather station for northern Indiana and southwestern Michigan.last_img read more