Saturday, August 25, 2007

Coast to Coast

The Bank Holiday weekend is upon us and I'm mostly somewhere else or so it seems; somewhere between the Costa del Weymouth and the Isle of Wight, although I did have to trip up to the pop festivals at Leeds and Reading yesterday.

On Friday, England appeared to have two very different climates in a line drawn roughly from Cambridge, with the north basking in sunshine and the south under cloud as low as 400 feet. This was so bad going past Stansted that I found myself in it for a while until I popped-out at 4,500 feet. I had company too. The military controller I was working warned me of two American F15s in the vicinity and sure enough, one of them appeared out of the cloud behind me briefly, before vanishing again back into the gloom below; back into Lakenheath I assume.

Today, the roads towards the south coast resorts were packed solid with cars and I did rather wonder if Weymouth actually had enough room to accomodate them all. Take the train, some might say but looking through today's news, I'm struck by one report that a local train guard has been sacked he stood-up to a group of youths

Robbie Moran, from Ramsgate is claiming unfair dismissal from Southeastern after he was attacked after asking one of them to take their feet off the seat.

He fought back but both he and his assailant were arrested. Southeastern railway sacked him a month later even though all charges were dropped.

The firm told Mr Moran he should have walked away, but he is now taking it to a tribunal claiming unfair dismissal.

However, Robbie has commented "They will have your fares off you, but you will have to look after yourself while you're on the train." He added, "The company are always concerned about customer care, but walking away and abandoning your passengers to someone that's being aggressive, that's not customer care to me."

Southeastern has refused to comment pending the employment tribunal next month.

From a local perspective, we know and I know there is a problem, from direct observation of the difficult task that railway employees have on the trains and the frequently drunk, abusive and non-fare-paying passengers that you might encounter on any train between Herne Bay and Ramsgate on any day of the week. That the company doesn't support an employee who has been assaulted in the line of duty, I find shocking.

What do you think?


Anonymous said...

This PC nonsense by his employers seems to be par for the course; the Inspector for Prisons has just advised that prison Officers should knock on cell doors before entering and call prisoners by THEIR choice of name not 2134 Smith! No wonder emigration by Brits is at record levels!

Nethercourt said...

Disgusting! Whatever happened to the system where companies employed people and felt some responsibility for their welfare?
Nowadays we are just 'Human Resources', to be used for as long as is expedient......

Little Weed said...

He sounds a very brave man to me who should have been rewarded rather than sacked - but - do we know the whole story?

Anonymous said...

Southeastern you completely disgust me, grow some b**** and defend your employe, the bosses should go undercover and see what the guards have put up with every day, they are regularly abused verbally and physically, i have seen it. Southeastern why not just let the thugs and scum 'run tings' for you, as they seem to be under the impression they do anyway ... everything thats wrong with this country is highlighted in this story. Give him an award for stepping in and stopping the rot, you should be proud to have such a man working for you. I hope Bob crow is 'watching'.

Anonymous said...

anon again!

Yes, bad situation. It's like sacking a Policeman after arresting a violent drunken scum chav lout, because some extreme force was needed to control things. Alone the name 'Guard' has been abused by South Eastern.
I think he should Sue them in return, for negligence in the call of duty and lack of support. Maybe he could get something out of them.
They are, after all said and done, 'retreating in the face of the enemy'.
Public concern for safety on a train is at a high just now, and this sort of treatment rather rubs salt in the already huge puss filled wound.

Anonymous said...

Please be aware you have only heard one side of the story and not of the other person involved

Anonymous said...

anon again!
The Doc got his info from BBC news. That is the only source at the moment.

Anonymous said...

Quote anon 5.46

Please be aware you have only heard one side of the story and not of the other person involved"

Good point. More important though, I suggest, is the BBC reporting of a guard "Getting involved in a fracas". Surely that is prejudicial ?

I remember the tragic case of the death of Pc Odell when the media also reported, in my view immediately and prejudicially, by quoting then Supt Rogers that Odell was wearing a reflective jacket and what speed the hit and run car was doing.

as I understand it Odell was responsible for recording the speed which he would radio to a stop party (wearing hi viz) further along the road. Hence an immediate defence question would be whether the officer carrying out the covert speed reading would wear a hi viz ?

As I understand it the six officers from the stood down stop party agreed (??) that Odell radioed ahead "it is forty two it is forty two this one is definitely getting a ticket"

Well if you time that statement and derive distance travelled in the time at a speed of forty two .... as I understand it things might look a tad anomalous.

Then if we consider that the standing down hi viz stop party was silhouetted against Margate streets involved in a Christmas lighting competition ?

And against that silhouette out steps an officer (wearing a hi viz ???) with one hand on his radar gun the other hand holding his radio mike to report the speed and his other hand raised aloft to stop the oncoming vehicle.

Overnight were the six accompanying officers allowed to collude ?

And in the morn Supt Rogers got his allagedly prejudicial comments reported by media.

What is the similarity between the two cases ? The media took the police line in its initial reporting and paid scant regard to prejudice.

If the guard is denying "Being involved in a fracas" then he should take action against the BBC.

As I recall

Anonymous said...

I do not know anon 7.27 what the tragic murder of PC Odell, because to hit a policeman on duty with your car in a 30mph limit in a well lit part of Shottendane Road and then drive away from the scene is just that, has to do with poor or biased reporting. I personally think that the police reporting was quite restrained in the circumstances. The case of the guard, is I suspect, a typical case by a drunk, load-mouthed scroat who didn't like being told to follow basic decent behaviour on the train and when the police became involved made out that HE was the victim and had been assaulted. The police had to investigate the scroat's complaint and even charge the guard; of course the charge was then dropped as is often the case. How many times do we read of arrogant bullies whose violent behaviour when challenged firmly, then becomes a whine that they were the victim. I will await with interest the tribunal looking at unfair dismissal and see what justification the employer puts forward.

Anonymous said...

This case is truly disgraceful. No wonder yobs get away without proper punishment. As for hearing the other side of the story, you must be joking!

DrMoores said...

True, it's from the news and as reported, I find it shocking!

The truth, as always, may lie somewhere in between but in the PC culture in which we presently exist, I'm hardly surprised by what I have read of this incident so far!

Anonymous said...

If you think the Robbie Moran case is bad enough, I am afraid there is more to come eg platform staff member arrested at Dover plus another guard at Ramsgate arrested. This problem wil not go away until southeastern take positive steps to stop scroats travelling on the network. The railway system is the only method scumbags can move around the country quickly. I don't blame PC I beleive the rail network disperses crime and the train operating companies are not effective enough in handling the problem. If scumbags were prevented from travelling even with a valid ticket a large proportion of imported crime into the South east would remain in the inner cities where to some degree it can be contained.

Anonymous said...

I'm sick of these management brown nose back stabbers. These people are everywhere these days and piss me off no end.