The Anonymous Widower

It’s Not Just Drones We Should Worry About!

In The Private Thoughts of Engineers and Scientists, I talked about a discussion, I had with a chemist about the production of sarin gas.

His view was that if amateurs tried to make the deadly gas, there was a high chance, they’d kill themselves, but he had a better idea to cause havoc in a city, which I will not disclose.

I too, have a couple of non-lethal methods, that would bring an airport or a city to a standstill.

One idea is so simple, that I suspect many terrorists could think it up.

Again, I will not disclose my ideas, but they are probably just two of many.

In some ways, the success of the drones in closing Gatwick Airport will only encourage others to think of new ways to disrupt our lives.

We still don’t now, who were behind the Gatwick Airport drones, but there must be a long list of suspects.

  • Extinction Rebellion
  • Anti-Airport Protesters
  • Russia – It worked better than Novichok!
  • North Korea – Unlikely, as they don’t seem to have any spats with the UK.

One thing that may rule out a lot of groups, is that sophisticated high-performance drones are not cheap.

Other groups will be ruled out, because they want to kill hundreds of innocent people and a couple of drones are unlikely to do this.

December 21, 2018 Posted by | Transport, Uncategorized | , , , | 2 Comments

Class 769 Flex In Action

The title of this post is the same as that of this article on Rail Engineer.

The article describes a ride in a Class 769 train, which is under test on the Grand Central Railway.

The article is very comprehensive, so if you want information on the progress of these trains, you ought to read the article.

One overall impression, I received, was that the train is a lot quieter, than the author expected.

This was the last sentence.

That said, based on the Flex experience, this writer would rather travel on a Class 769 than on a Class 150.

I can’t wait to have a ride, when they enter service in the New Year.

The article also gives a summary of Porterbrook’s various FLEX projects, which are taking redundant, but very serviceable electric-trains and converting them into self-powered trains needed on the UK rail network.

The article also says this about the future of the Class 319 trains.

There are 86 Class 319 four-car units, all of which were made redundant from the Thameslink route. Porterbrook has been successful in placing approximately 45 units for further use – 32 for Northern (eight of which will be converted to Flex specification) and 13 units with West Midlands Trains. In addition, there are Flex orders for five units for Wales, 19 units for Great Western Railway and one for the University of Birmingham (the HydroFlex). This makes a grand total of 71 of the 86 units, leaving 15 still to find new homes.

I believe that Porterbrook’s reaction to finding that they had a fleet of trains for some of which, there were no obvious uses has been admirable. But also very pragmatic and hopefully financially rewarding in the long-term.

Looking back to the days of British Rail, these trains would probably have been sent to the scrapyard.

 

December 21, 2018 Posted by | Transport | , , | 1 Comment

London’s Northern Line Extension To Battersea Delayed By A Year

The title of this post is the same as that of this article in the Financial Times.

This is a paragraph.

People close to the project believe that TfL will announce in the new year that the completion date is being pushed back until September 2021.

This delay will heap more financial woes on Transport for London.

Transport for London have already postponed these important upgrades.

  • The resignalling of the Piccadilly Line.
  • The rebuilding of Camden Town station.
  • The rebuilding of Holborn station.

I believe that on financial grounds, the Mayor must reverse his fare-freeze as soon as possible.

December 21, 2018 Posted by | Transport | , , | Leave a comment