Arriva invests £3.5m in Telford

first_imgContinuing investment by Arriva Midlands has been demonstrated by the introduction of 14 Wrightbus StreetLite Maxes into service in Telford. They are part of a wider investment by Arriva Midlands, which over the last month has seen it spend 3.5m on 25 new vehicles on the town’s bus fleet.The 44-seat StreetLite Maxes have entered service on route 44, which runs between Leegomery and Madeley up to every 10 minutes, and include Micro Hybrid technology, making them eligible for an additional 6p per km BSOG payment.“We are committed to making much-needed improvements to the critical route, and are positive that our customers will see the benefits of travelling on these next-generation greener and cleaner buses,” says Arriva Midlands Head of Business Development and Communications Keith Myatt.A launch event for the most recent new buses was held in the town at Southwater and attended by Telford MP David Wright, Leader of Telford and Wrekin Council Kuldip Sahota, and Portfolio Holder for Transport Councillor Hilda Rhodes. The public was also invited to see the vehicles for themselves.last_img read more

Coach & Bus UK 2017: First Theatre speakers announced

first_imgGiles Fearnley, Steve Whiteway, Helen Scholes, and Adrian de Courcey, are among the top speakers now confirmed for Coach & Bus UK 2017, which returns to the NEC Birmingham on 4-5 October. The Theatre at Coach & Bus UK, sponsored by SmartDrive Systems, will feature a host of high-profile experts from across the bus and coach industry. They’ll be sharing their insights into some of the hot topics affecting today’s public transport community, including recent developments in green vehicle technologies, contactless payments and mobile ticketing, congestion and the Clean Air agenda, electric vehicle roll out, customer engagement, and more.Giles Fearnley, MD of First Group’s UK Bus Division, heads the show’s Theatre line-up, appearing in an exclusive opening day Keynote. Mr Fearnley has spearheaded First Bus’ industry-leading approach to operating cleaner and more fuel efficient vehicles. He’ll be discussing the challenges of the last two years and the opportunities ahead at 1100hrs on Wednesday 4 October.Other opening day session highlights include a compelling look at effective marketing strategies for operators, hosted by former Epsom Coaches MD Steve Whiteway and Stagecoach South West’s Marketing Manager Helen Scholes. Dan Hayes, project manager at Low Carbon Vehicle Partnership, will be giving an update on LowCVP’s recent activities, including a preliminary evaluation report on the UK coach market.  He’ll outline how carbon and air quality are finally being addressed in unison, touching on the Clean Vehicle Retrofit Accreditation Scheme to be used for vehicles to gain access to Clean Air Zones.Adrian de Courcey, CEO of Travel de Courcey, is the first panellist to be announced for day two’s opening session, which will focus on profitability and business growth in the coach travel sector.  Well-known for his tech-savvy approach – leading the way in adopting the latest innovations on the market (like big fast-charging electric buses and smart telematics, for example) – he’ll be sharing his insights on how new and next generation technologies can help operators develop more effective ways of working.  Under his leadership, Travel de Courcey recently won a Queen’s Award for Enterprise in the category of Sustainable Development.  The only bus or coach operator to ever have been recognised for this honour. Another new speaker for 2017 is Estibalitz Aramburu, business development manager at Jema Energy SA.  She’ll be discussing ‘Integrating electric mobility in cities’ in the show’s closing session.  According to the latest report from the Zero Emission Urban Bus System (ZeEUS) project[1], the UK is leading the rest of Europe in electric bus deployment.  With more electric buses hitting the UK’s streets in the next year, the session will examine how these vehicles can be integrated into the distribution grid, and their impact on local infrastructure, load profiles and demand.The full 2017 line-up is due to be unveiled in the coming weeks.   Senior representatives from National Express, Stagecoach, First Group, Arriva, The Go-Ahead Group, Metroline, Abellio, Transdev, RATPDev, Translink, Brighton & Hove Bus & Coach Co, Metrobus, Reading Buses, Nottingham City Transport, trentbarton, Bus Eireann, Lothian Buses, Shearings, Centrebus, Edwards Coaches, Bakers Dolphin, Transport For Greater Manchester, Transport for London, and Tower Transit, are among the who’s who of visitors that have already pre-registered to visit.  Over 6,000 attendees are expected. To register free in advance, visit prestigious routeone Awards take place on the first night of the show (Wednesday 4 October) in the Monarch Suite at the Hilton Birmingham Metropole Hotel.  The 2017 finalists are now available to view at read more

Paul Clark Services is appointed by ZF

first_imgA fifth service partner has been appointed by ZF Aftermarket, to provide support for diagnostics, repair, and replacement work.Paul Clark Services Ltd joins Adtec Auto, EcoDrive Transmissions, and Powertrain Products Ltd, as part ZF Aftermarket’s dedicated Service Partner Network for the bus and coach market.  The appointment comes as Paul Clark Services celebrated its 20th year of providing engineering support.It now has more than 100 engineers providing a national support network.Paul Clark Services provides both short term and long-term mechanical, electrical, body, hybrid, and full electrical vehicle diagnostic support to the bus and coach industry.The company already works closely with many of the UK’s largest bus operators, and has invested in specialist transmission jacks, Testman for full diagnosis, and ZF service kits, in addition to completing extensive ZF training.Paul Clark, Managing Director at Paul Clark Services Ltd says: “Becoming a ZF Service Partner is the next chapter of our growth story at Paul Clark and demonstrates both our excellent technical knowledge and strong reputation in the bus and coach market.“We have already appointed a dedicated Business Support Manager to oversee our support to ZF UK, and are working closely with them to provide industry leading field support to OEMs and end users.”David Wakeling, Commercial Vehicle Manager, ZF Aftermarket Bus and Coach added: “It’s great to have a recognised name such as Paul Clark Services included in the ZF Partner Network, further enhancing the service we provide to OEMs.“Not only does the business provide 24/7 nationwide coverage, but they also have an excellent workshop facility in Royal Wootton Basset, which is continuing to grow in size.”For more information about ZF’s bus and coach service, visit www.zf.comlast_img read more

Go-Ahead faces up bus challenge

first_imgGo-Ahead has set out its strategy for developing its non-London UK and Ireland bus market. It is also using a range of ‘capital light’ measures for international growth, as it faces a downturn in UK regional bus ridership.The strategy was revealed as Go-Ahead announced its global bus and rail results for the year ending 30 June 2018, with overall revenue slightly down at £3.4bn, and pre-tax profits up by 6.6% at £145.7m. Its annual dividend is unchanged at £1.03.David Brown’s strategy is to: “Focus on urban areas with growth potential”Rail, London and Regional bus each account for one-third of operating profit.For Regional Bus, Go-Ahead says: “The market environment is presenting us with further consolidation and bolt-on acquisition opportunities. We remain very selective about those which we pursue.”Its investment in 173 new buses for regional bus was
 reflected in higher depreciation.In Regional Bus operating profit was down by £1.3m to £45.8m due to the impact of contract losses and bad weather during Q3. 
Despite this revenue per mile is up by 2.2% and journeys per mile are 0.1% ahead of last year, excluding acquisitions.While margins fell by 0.6% to 11.9% in Regional Bus, they are “still strong relative to the sector.”Against a background of market trends that Go-Ahead identifies of declining UK passenger numbers, changes in society and consumer behaviours, air quality, congestion in urban areas 
and the impact of the Bus Services Act, Go-Ahead CEO David Brown (pictured) says the strategy is to: “Focus on urban areas with growth potential.“Deliver high quality services to attract customers; have agile local responses; focus on how buses can solve 
city problems; work in partnership with local authorities 
and take advantage of sensible bolt-on opportunities.”In its international bus and rail markets it will focus on market entry via contracts rather than acquisition 
- as demonstrated in Dublin – and will be “Capex light – focused on margins and returns.”[Find out more]Results at are herelast_img read more

FORS briefings set to take place in November

first_imgBriefings for FORS members to be held throughout the UK in NovemberMembers of the Fleet Operator Recognition Scheme (FORS) are invited to attend one of six briefings to be held around the country in November to hear about latest developments and to ask questions of the scheme.FORS is open to coach and bus operators, and in its most recent round of meetings in May and June saw places taken very quickly. FORS also offers training to members.The coming meetings will begin in Birmingham on 5 November and end in Crumlin on 22 read more

Welsh gov pushes for diversity in bus drivers

first_imgBusiness Wales, part of the Welsh Government, has launched a new pilot scheme to help bus operators recruit a more diverse range of drivers.Through the scheme, Business Wales will help operators shortlist applicants and invite them to work experience opportunities, allowing operators to get a closer look at applicants and make them job offers.The Department for Work and Pensions will pay for PSV driver training.In return, operators will need to commit to attend diversity workshops and make reasonable adjustments to their recruitment policy.The first workshop has already taken place at Llandudno Junction, and others are planned during May and June.The pilot is taking place in North Wales, and if successful, will be rolled out across Wales.Business Wales says more than 9,000 coach and bus drivers in the UK are over the age of 75, and only 2.3% to 2.7% are female, which contributes to the lack of drivers.SummitThe drive behind the new recruitment scheme arose from a major bus summit hosted by Welsh Government in Wrexham in 2017.The summit brought together key stakeholders from the sector, including local authorities and bus operators, who identified the need for delivering a comprehensive programme of support to the sector.With major recruitment issues and a lack of diversity in the industry, Business Wales is taking a proactive stance in addressing the issue.Business Wales Relationship Manager and Lead on the initiative Clive Barnard says: “It’s really important that the transport sector in Wales makes changes to its culture and recruitment process.“There aren’t enough younger drivers and the industry needs to diversify its workforce and bring minority groups, including women, into the fold.“The transport sector needs to attract new blood and reaching out to a dynamic human resource will help the industry in the short and long-term and that’s why we’re delighted to be lending our support.“We’ve built a close relationship with transport operators in North Wales, and listened closely to their concerns, and by working with our partners we’re hoping to remove employment barriers and make a positive difference for local communities.”Economy and Transport Minister Ken Skates says: “I am pleased Business Wales are launching this important pilot which is another key step in the Welsh Government’s commitment in supporting our vital bus services.“It’s clear there is a gap between the number of female and male bus drivers in the industry and the pilot will look at addressing this issue as well as looking at the need to attract younger drivers and tackle the under-representation of minority groups in the industry.“This is an important time for the bus industry in Wales and through close collaboration with partners, the pilot will support bus operators to recruit a more diverse range of drivers, tackle the shortage of drivers currently being experienced, and provide vital employment opportunities.”Traffic Commissioner for Wales Nick Jones, who has a strong record in addressing equality issues, says: “I am grateful to partners in this excellent initiative, which has my full support.“There is a general shortage of PSV drivers, exacerbated by the fact that the existing profile of PSV drivers does not reflect the population, a feature that needs to be addressed.”last_img read more

Isle of Wight residents urged to use ‘track and trace’ app

first_imgIslanders on the Isle of Wight are being urged by operator Southern Vectis to download the government’s new contact tracing app, which is designed to minimise the spread of coronavirus COVID-19.The app is part of new trial of preventative measures and will work with government contact tracing services and swab testing for those with potential coronavirus COVID-19 symptoms.It works via users self-reporting symptoms. The app then detects other app users that may have been in significant contact with that person and alerts them anonymously. The app then provides advice, such as how to get tested.Southern Vectis General Manager Richard Tyldsley says: “Everyone on the island now has access to the new app, and we’re throwing our full support behind it.“We must all pull together and make this trial a success. We urge everyone who can to download this pioneering app – so the rest of the country can follow suit.“This is our chance to help reduce the chance of the virus spreading. It’s all about taking action to protect ourselves, and the NHS.”last_img read more

Indiana lawmaker under fire for posting noose picture

first_imgIndianaNews Twitter Facebook Previous articleConstantine man, 60, sentenced in federal court for distributing child pornographyNext articleCrime Stoppers, Integra to host shredding event on Saturday Associated PressNews from the Associated Press and its network of reporters and publications. Indiana lawmaker under fire for posting noose picture Google+ (Photo supplied/Indiana House of Representatives) INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — An Indiana lawmaker who posted nooses under a Facebook story about a black man pleading guilty to rape is drawing criticism for using racist imagery.Republican state Rep. Jim Lucas, from Seymour, posted a picture of a gallows with two nooses under a WISH-TV story about Marquise Dozier’s case.Lucas says he wanted to punish the man and believes in capital punishment. Dozier faces up to 72 years in prison.Lucas says he’s previously posted the image under stories involving white offenders. Lucas says he isn’t racist and doesn’t believe the photo is.The chair of the Indiana Black Legislative Caucus blasted the photo.Democratic state Rep. Robin Shackleford tells The Indianapolis Star noose imagery is well-known to be connected to the lynchings of African Americans and the “normalization of racism” must end. WhatsApp By Associated Press – August 20, 2019 1 214 Google+ Twitter Facebook Pinterest Pinterest WhatsApplast_img read more

Man found not guilty in co-worker’s stabbing death

first_img Facebook By Jon Zimney – September 7, 2019 0 194 Facebook Google+ Twitter Man found not guilty in co-worker’s stabbing death Pinterest WhatsApp (Photo supplied/St. Joseph County Jail) A man was found not guilty in a deadly stabbing that happened last year at Patrick Metals on Lincoln Way East in Mishawaka.Tommy Love, 36, was on trial for voluntary manslaughter in connection with the death of Aaron Woods, back in February 2018.Love’s defense attorney argued that it was a case of self defense and that Woods had attacked Love, pushed him against the wall and Love stabbed him with a folding pocket knife, believing his life was in danger.Eyewitnesses testified Woods had previously threatened to kill Love. WhatsApp Twitter Google+ Pinterest IndianaLocalNews Previous articleIndiana links its 1st death to vaping, 3rd so far in countryNext articleDeath investigation underway in Goshen Jon ZimneyJon Zimney is the News and Programming Director for News/Talk 95.3 Michiana’s News Channel and host of the Fries With That podcast. Follow him on Twitter @jzimney.last_img read more

Renewable energy targets under fire

first_imgThe company has also developed a rubbish collection truck which can be powered by gas generated from the refuse it collects. The Commission wants the electricity industry to double its take-up of renewable power to 30%. But European trade lobby Eurelectric claims this will be impossible without a rule change to force companies to buy more expensive ‘green’ energy, or the provision of subsidies to compensate for the extra production costs of renewable power.It says the first option would require the re-regulation of a sector where liberalisation has only just been agreed and mean extra costs for consumers who are expecting price cuts, while the second would involve heavy spending by national governments.Eurelectic believes its members would face considerable expense in connecting up remote wind or solar farms to national grids. It adds that power generated from such sources would be sporadic and hard to build into national supply systems. “The costs of integrating this energy are likely to double the capital costs,” said a spokesman.EU energy ministers are due to decide on their response to the Commission’s strategy paper on renewables at their next meeting on 11 May.Europe’s current performance in promoting renewables is patchy. The UK’s take-up of renewable power stands at around 4% of national consumption, compared with 7% in France, Denmark and Greece, 17.5% in Portugal, 19.3% in Finland, and 24% in Austria and Sweden.Swedish enthusiasm for using renewable energy wherever possible is underlined by car manufacturer Volvo. It is currently advertising a car which runs on biogas by using a picture of the vehicle’s fuel tank being refilled through a hose connected to a pile of manure. The Commission’s aim of doubling renewable power’s contribution to meeting EU needs from 6% to 12% by the year 2010 took a hesitant step forward last week when national energy experts accepted this goal as a non-binding target.Boosting renewables is at the heart of the Commission’s plans to meet its Kyoto climate change conference commitments to cut greenhouse gases produced from burning coal, gas and oil.It would also ease some of the Commission’s worries about the EU’s overdependence on imported energy, which is set to climb to 75% of power consumption over the next 25 years from the current 50%.center_img However, some member states argue that any target, even the indicative one which the Commission has put forward, could raise hopes which governments will not be able to fulfil.Opposition to the proposal is being led by Germany, which does not want to give any hostages to the future and particularly to its powerful ‘green’ lobby.The UK, which has no hope of meeting a 12% target for renewables, has also blown hot and cold on the issue, with Industry Minister John Battle forced into denying any foot-dragging on his part.Commission officials believe, however, that they have now won critics over to their calls for the institution to be given a key role in coordinating and filling in the gaps in national policies with its own renewables programme.The electricity sector still remains doubtful about a Commission policy it has no hesitation about describing as “overambitious”.Most of the existing cheap options for renewables, such as hydro-electric power, are already being used, leaving only more costly forms of energy production to meet the proposed targets.last_img read more