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Thursday, July 20, 2006

Shorts - Tube Drivers allright Jack

Rail & Bus Drivers in the Wrong Trousers

Ahh, the hot weather and once again the Evening Standard gets the opportunity to thank the heat fairies so they can come up with the usual "London Fries" and "Tube hotter than hell" headlines. However for once London Underground drivers haven't got something to moan about as they are allowed to wear shorts while working and can also drive with their cab doors open.

Not so for bus and train drivers though, where there is no leniency given with the clothes they have to wear to work.


So I wonder how Tube drivers manage to have this privilege? According to most reports, buses seem to have the same "EU cattle transportation regulation breaking temperatures" as the London Underground. On some Tube lines air cooling units have been installed in drivers' cabs. The overland trains that I've travelled on the past few days (including the Eurostar) seem to have an amount of cool air being rotated around them, so perhaps drivers' cabs are not quite as hot. However, it still seems unfair that there's a distinction between the transport drivers.

Any other theories as why this is the case? Do you think we might see Bob Crow calling for strike action if the heatwave and shorts ban continues? Particularly as the TUC have launched a
"cool work" campaign encouraging employers to let their staff "dress down a little for summer". They say "Bosses should only stop staff from wearing shorts to work if they have first carried out a proper risk assessment, and only people whose jobs could prove hazardous should still be made to work in long trousers."


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