Re: Good news and bad news.
Posted by A65Bill on February 17, 2018, 9:48 am, in reply to "Re: Good news and bad news."
For 20 yers or so, I've only gone into London when I needed to and over the last 5/6 years, I've positively avoided all but the most essential trips and for the last 3 years I've opted out of riding my bike into and around central London. |
Strangely, perhaps, I always liked driving and riding in the centre as, so long as you knew your way around (I'd done it since 1973), it was easy to avoid the worst hold-ups and everyone learned from the Cabbies the skills of observation, poaitioning, sharing the space. Even on a bike and even recently, I've had Cabbies acknowledge my making room for them to get in position and make progress.
But now driving and riding standards have dropped through the floor. I was in a cab along Marylebone Rd last September? when a van from one of the major parcel delivery firms, just swung across the front of the cab, clipping the front end & plonking himself in the cab's braking zone. Even with a full emergency stop the cab rear-ended the van. The bizzies came to supervise and immediately believed the van driver that the cab had shunted him. I pointed out the cab shaped damage on the offside of the van and that the van had a dashcam on board. I was threatened with arrest for obstructing an Officer in the course of his duty & then warned about telling the Copper to p**s off.
My Cabbie used his connections/support to request copies of the street camera records. It all became quite nasty.
I went to Court as a witness, the Cabbie was being done for dangerous driving (not careless, as there was a passenger on board!). The van driver was untraceable, his dashcam hadn't been secured & after 3 witness appearances, the Magistrate asked CPS and the Met's representing Officer why the case had even been brought, before slinging it out. The Cab's insurance claim has only very recently been settled.
I was having a coffee along City Road about 2 months ago & was talking to a couple of Coppers on refs. They told me that they can't even count the number of ANPR pings they get driving in the centre, but can't deal with. I told them my cab story & they just nodded, adding that recruitment standards had been dropped and training and probation budgets had been cut.