Saturday, January 01, 2011

The costs multiply

With this sort of thing happening, we can no longer afford the luxury of a Met Office obsessed with global warming – not that we ever could.

Apart from anything else, we need the Met Office focused on the job it is supposedly paid to do, to reduce this sort of abuse, where rail companies "cancelled hundreds of trains during the big freeze in a bid to meet punctuality targets", and thus avoided having to pay compensation for poor performance.

Commuters would have been entitled to a five percent price reduction on season tickets if fewer than 82 percent Southeastern services had been on time. But, by cancelling trains, the firm, which operates some of the country's busiest commuter routes from Kent, East Sussex and outer London, passed targets by just 0.4 percent and avoided having to pay out.

It is this sort of behaviour that has one dreaming of wheeling out the tumbrils, and when the "referee" is also bent, there is very little hope of any other option.