i'd like to say...
The editors at the Times do have a lot of these people........ a Jonathan Leake often is bylined for the sort of stories that end up in the public domain before they should be.
17 posts • joined 31 Mar 2009
to be truly nominate determinism the delightful subject of discussion would have to work as a "traffic counter with special interest to yellow-black flying honey producer"
as in those people who stand by by roads counting cars
"red car, blue car, red car, saw a bee...."
that type of thing.
Erm this all smells of viral
Of course the Bank will do the PR spin about sacking him etc etc but lets face it the Banks name will be heavily publicised as will the network that let it happen
Fair play to all parties involved ... and how long will it be until this is used as another justification for the Great Electronic Barrier Reef
For the record I approve of this harmless fun style of advertising
Some food for though .......
--The RCC / Eurotunnel --
If the Eurotunnel [the phat controller that actually controls the tunnel traffic, not the ex-le shuttle bit] RCC was to have failed (The UK one) There is another one in France that 'officially' runs like an AXE-10 or similar (ie dual hot, one executive, the non-executive one 1 instruction behind).
In laymans terms if the UK one stops working, The french one takes over - almost without the actual people who run it realising they are now in control of the tunnel....... and if the French one were then to also fail, then a failsafe falls into play -so lets throw out the idea of the RCC going down, partly as that would have leaked by now.
Also as the article states - the number of slots in the tunnel is very undersubscribed even at peak. So much so, that assuming a rival operator gets its rolling-stock certified, as of next year there is the possibility of lots of passenger services by different companies running (eg RyanRail, EasyEurope....... humm ok lets not get off track). My point here is that to the RCC, even if everything wasn't 'business as usual' they certainly wasn't out of their normal operating procedures, or if they were - they were minor deviations from it.
That strongly leads me to believe that it wasn't the Eurotunnel phat control operators [humans on ground] that caused the initial issue. [i'm just following orders comes to mind] Thought that bit of the business was wholly to blame for not getting the people out of the tunnel sooner can't really be awarded to any one else... though i'm sure they will try! .
So lets look at Eurostar. This bit needs splitting into 3 or more.
Bit A : Eurostar, the rail bit - as the article says Eurostar in this context is simply a customer of a carrier (or in this case 3 carriers - High Speed 1, SNCEF and "Under-The-Sea") In the same way we buy T1/E1's etc so do they...... so that bit of the business can breath a sigh of relief.... they couldn't have stopped this either IMHO.
Bit B : The poor gits still at the station customer service (ie anyone in CS that isn't on the train) -
You failed on this one big time.... big time ...... There are hundreds of things you could have done, and in this case many of them should have been done.
You could have used the time to ring SouthEastern and block book the Javelins, your friends at SNCEF and get TGV's stacked at Calais and figure out the bit at Dover/ Calais or something similar. You could have "rang" every hotel in a 10 mile radius of the stations and block booked out rooms that were still free and got cabs to transport ppl back and too and many other things that would have helped your customers..
Basically if you feel the need to bring in the police - you need to think - i've upset one too many people... and that should on its own send alarm bells ringing that your doing things wrong.
Im going to stop on this bit now as the rest of what i want to say is a bit too in-depth for a comment section.
Bit C : The Train and its posse... heres where things get really interesting.
I have personally been on 3 Eurostars that have broken down for >2 hours and 2 others that suffered temporary issues.(out of lots - so by the law of averages I'm happy with the number of issues I have been involved in!) and for this train operator theres some quirks
The train is supposed to (and does) carry two sets of crew. The train itself is a mirror of itself (The mirror being at carriage 9/10). This level of double staffing is complete - There are two drivers and driver possee (essentially one is on service, the other on a break ) NB The trains never turn around, and if as I have experienced the train were to stop between Ebbsfleet and Ashford and the London pulling carriage goes completely tits-up - the Paris pulling carriage pulls it back to Ashford...... quite sensible if you ask me.
This suggests that both sides of one of the train failed, else i'd have thought they would have invoked this to pull them out on the French side, non?
Inside the passenger bit there are actaully TWO head honchos of the train - and likewise down the ranks.... this is for service level reasons (mostly) as without it the train is too big to manage by a single crew.
My point here is with two equals on the train, even with an assumed official policy on who runs the show and all of the required facts at both of the head honchos fingers, in the event of an event there is an even number of people making decisions, the same people who will at some point need to work together again - and that always seems to lead to trouble. nuff said
The other point is that even if a train gets to a station - thats not the end of the troubles for "Eurostar" - as the train is essentially in a sort of international no-mans land. Everyone has passed boarder checks and this is where the problem starts.
e.g If a train breaks down in Lille and they open the doors, and another train 'stops (sked)' in Lille they risk a real, if slim chance of letting someone who is barred from a country entering it - They very nicely call this 'cross contamination' (A unfortunate but highly accurate and emphatic phrase).
This is probably the number one reason we hear - 'we were locked on the train for ages'
It boils down to this, there are a number of things "Eurostar" don't really have control over when the smelly stuff hits [though they need better negotitors prior to this] , the one they do is customer service. Unexpected bad things happen but how you deal with them is more important once they have happened. In most cases more than what has happened... and here we have a prime example of how not to handle the aftermath.
To me, this feels like actions of bean counters and suit types that have blocked in the past the sensible concerns of the folks on the ground who probably have preached this was waiting to happen..... only for there ideas to be welcomed and promptly put in a siding marked "bin" or /dev/null - i make this assumption based on general life experience :)
On the plus side I now personally have 4 free returns with them (and at this rate - increasing!!..... does anyone know - are they like shell stamps.... can i trade them for a toaster...?
Paris, well many reasons... I'd like to stay in the Paris Hilton on Eurostars expense :)
Yay to the Meercat suggestion - Theyyrre greaaaate
and another yay to the the 'auto retune' - i mean for all of Sky and Virgins faults - at least that all happens in the background.
Fail however to the people who own the brand "Freeview" - As part of licensing your logo you could have mandated that things like OTA 'updates' (of any type) were standardised etc etc - so no rubbish there about "manufactures choice"
As to those who want 'freedom to retune" well theres an app for that..... erm no wait - there could quite easily be a option for that (akin to the way Sky allow you to over ride the 'standby at will' system)
Damm - thats two compliments to Sky, 1 to Virgin - thats not right, is it??????
But BIG BIG +1 to the Meerkat and a +1 to the RTFM
Suggestion to the great ones at El Reg too - a RTFA (read the fooby article icon too)
Point #2 - Why should they not insist where you sit, its their plane and saving fuel will both reduce the effect of the environmental impact alongside allowing them to pass the savings onto the customer.....
.......... ok enough sudo PR bull (thou I stand by my planes should fly using the least amount of fuel as thats good sense) ........... we get it - theres a vast majority of El Reggys who don't want to use Ryanair...... solution - don't
Flown with them once years and years ago - seen worse on huge airline.... at the end of the day 99% I want to get from A to B .... they are short haul carriers (just) and I find the whole problem is with those that come home moaning that their "entire" holiday / trip was ruined because of a 5 min incident.
IF that 5 min incident was loss of life, limb or fruit of the loom I could understand but a bad plane journey..... my holidays start when i check into the hotel room and finish when i check out - the rest is annoying travel.
Badgers - I just love the icon... its my staple
This is disappointing news, and I wonder if El Reg would clarify if this is "worldwide" or restricted to certain regions.
The reason I ask is that pre-G1 I was a Vario X user (windows mobile x) and T-Mobile UK offer 3 Web and Walk plans - the first (and most basic ) offer handset use only
The second (which they put all G1 users on) Allows in their T and C for tethering - in fact they market this point reasonably heavily - the limitation is on "voice" protocols
Their third (and most expensive) allows for "voice" protocols.
So why block an application that is "allowed" in the T-Mobile UK Terms and Conditions - albeit with a "rooted" (closest thing to jail-broken) handset, which itself is against the TC's
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