Pen­sion­ers go berserk for new hear­ing aid

Harefield Gazette - - NEWS -

TRANS­PORT for Lon­don has an­nounced the pur­chase of 94 new trains for the Pic­cadilly line – but fre­quent com­muters on the de­lay-hit line might be frus­trated to hear they won’t be op­er­a­tional for an­other five years.

From 2023, the Tube line will start re­ceiv­ing Siemens Mo­bil­ity trains to re­place the 1970s ex­ist­ing stock.

The an­nounce­ment comes af­ter days of rush hour dif­fi­cul­ties on the tube line, which runs from Uxbridge and Heathrow Air­port in the west to Cock­fos­ters in the north.

The £1.5 bil­lion con­tract be­tween Lon­don Un­der­ground and the Ger- man train­maker will see 94 trains de­liv­ered in to­tal.

Around 700,000 peo­ple use the Pic­cadilly line ev­ery day, ser­viced even­tu­ally by a train ev­ery 135 sec­onds at peak times.

TfL hope that would mean an ex­tra 21,000 pas­sen­gers can board the trains ev­ery hour.

The cur­rent Pic­cadilly line stock dates back to the 1970s and strug­gles to cope with the de­mands of to­day’s tube net­work with fre­quent de­lays and can­cel­la­tions to ser­vices.

The new trains will be longer, with wider doors and walk-through car­riages sim­i­lar to those on the Dis­trict, Cir­cle and Metropoli­tan lines.

Cru­cially, the trains will in­clude air con­di­tion­ing, as will the Cen­tral, Bak­er­loo and Water­loo & City lines, as part of the Deep Tube Im­prove­ment pro­gram, with fur­ther con­tracts to be is­sued later, and an es­ti­mated 250 new Tube trains com­ing to the cap­i­tal.

Ca­pac­ity across all four lines is ex­pected to in­crease by 36% by 2035. Mean­while Lon­don’s pop­u­la­tion is ex­pected to in­crease by more than 20% to 10.8 mil­lion by 2041.

The con­tract for the Pic­cadilly line Tube trains is be­ing awarded with the ex­pec­ta­tion that the same trains will be or­dered for the other three Deep Tube lines.

Sab­rina Sous­san, CEO of Siemens Mo­bil­ity, said “Our new metro trains for Lon­don will sig­nif­i­cantly in­crease ca­pac­ity and fre­quency on the Pic­cadilly line.

“At the same time, they will of­fer tube users sub­stan­tially im­proved pas­sen­ger ex­pe­ri­ence.

“Our ser­vices will sup­port Lon­don Un­der­ground over the trains’ full life­cy­cle to en­sure that they serve the Lon­don pub­lic with the high­est re­li­a­bil­ity and avail­abil­ity.”

Nigel Hol­ness, man­ag­ing di­rec­tor of Lon­don Un­der­ground, said: “The in­tro­duc­tion of new trains on the Pic­cadilly line will sig­nif­i­cantly im­prove the jour­neys of mil­lions of our cus­tomers, pro­vid­ing more fre­quent and more re­li­able trains for decades to come.

“This or­der will mean the re­place­ment of the 1970s Pic­cadilly line fleet, with de­liv­ery of the new trains start­ing in 2023, and will help ad­dress crowd­ing on the line as Lon­don’s pop­u­la­tion con­tin­ues to rise.”

Pre­vi­ously, the pos­si­bil­ity of driver­less trains on the Tube net­work was raised, although speak­ing in June, TfL said they would keep an oper­a­tor on board the trains.

A TfL spokes­woman said: “We have no cur­rent plans for driver­less trains. Our next gen­er­a­tion of trains will be in­tro­duced with an oper­a­tor on board.

“Given they will start to be in­tro­duced in the mid-2020s, and will last for at least 40 years, it makes sense to en­sure they are fu­ture proof and can sup­port the lat­est au­to­matic tech­nol­ogy.” Please post me free & with­out obli­ga­tion full de­tails of the Alta2 Pro hear­ing aid. Tick if pen­sioner.

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