Unite bus drivers demanded London Mayor Sadiq Khan and Transport for London (TfL) must implement the findings of the London Assembly transport committee report, Driven to distraction, as a matter of urgency, today (July 18).
The call comes as Unite fights to drive up safety and reduce the stress and fatigue of London’s 26,000 bus drivers. It follows the publication of Driven to distraction, which identifies long shifts, inadequate breaks and irregular shift patterns as causing high levels of stress among the capital’s bus drivers.
Warning against speed increasingly being put before safety, Unite backed the transport committee’s call to revise the incentive scheme for bus operators and place the emphasis on bus safety rather than solely on punctuality.
“London bus drivers do one of the most stressful jobs in the capital,” commented Unite regional officer John Murphy.
“It will alarm passengers that they have to work in regime which places speed ahead of safety, driving under constant pressure to run on time on some of the busiest streets in the country.”
Unite has long been calling for action to be taken to alleviate stress and fatigue on London’s buses. “We welcome the London Assembly transport committee’s report added Murphy, warning, “It cannot be allowed to gather dust and its recommendations overlooked or ignored.
“We need a shift in working culture on London’s buses with driver and bus safety the priority, rather than squeezing costs and meeting incentive targets.
“The mayor of London and TfL need to place safety ahead of punctuality when contracts are awarded and implement the key findings of this report as a matter of urgency.”