Hello and welcome to my Blog, my name is Chris, a bus driver for First Mendip based in Wells, Somerset. Married to Fiona, we live in Midsomer Norton near Bath, with Harvey the dog and Boots the cat. My main hobby is Amateur Radio and I hold the call sign G4KVI. I am the repeater keeper for GB3UB and MB7UB. I have a fascination for the weather and all things to do with nature and science. I am a biker and currently ride a Honda CBfF600. As a Christian I worship, when shifts allow at St. Nicolas Church in Radstock. These are my observations on my life, both at work and at home.

27 Oct 2009

Team Work

One thing I like and enjoy about working on National Express is the way the team works together. An example of this was today. The 'Street up' broke down. Another vehicle was run out and swapped over by another driver. He arrived in Bath where passengers were waiting. There were five passengers wanting to buy tickets.This required me to ring control and check seats were available and write out the tickets which all takes time. Without any prompting the other drivers loaded the waiting passengers. This happens all the time and makes the job so much easier and enjoyable.

17 Oct 2009

Drive Green

We have just had a system called 'Drive Green' installed in all Bath vehicles. The aim of this is to help cut down on the fuel consumption and improve driving by displacing a red, amber or green light when various maneuvers are made. However, at present it does not work. If you drive very carefully round a route it shows red all the time, then, if you drive like a taxi driver, it shows green. it has been so bad that it has now lost creditability with most, if not all drivers so I think the only course of action is to find a very large skip. It is rumored that each unit cost £800. I think the money could have been spent much more wisely. for example hiring more inspectors and finding the poor drivers and retraining them rather than 'tarring every one with the same brush' but what do I know??  some where there is a depot with a system working correctly.

Musical Coaches

First up today. So in the depot at 0400 to find a coach full of passengers being unloaded. Turned out it was the 404 that had broken down and had been offered a replacement coach from Bath to get them in to London. In the office I was asked to take the Western National Coach up to London and change over with the 404 that would ensure that the depots get their own coaches back. Good trip up and as I arrived at Victoria the drivers were waiting for the change (the message got through for once) so another job done. This also brings me on to subject of 'new' coaches. We now have 20535 and 20540 I believe this along with another will replace 20525,26 and 27. this last bit is for the benefit of any Bus enthusiasts.

14 Oct 2009

Bus Work

Ok the broadband is back and working. Speed does not seem too bad at around 3.5 meg. Sky assure me I can get 6.5 so we will see. Street shunt today so that means bus work in the afternoon. Route 6 and 7 which goes  around Fairfield park. very nice view of the city of Bath. Only problem is the parking. Lorries and cars are parked both sides of the road while they unload. It always amazes me how the police and council turn a blind eye to this. I assume the shop keepers bleat on how are they to run a business if they can not unload lorries. Well the answer is simply. If there are double yellow lines outside your shop, house etc. TOUGH LUCK they are put there for a VERY GOOD reason. For example it blocks the road for the bus. And also will block an emergency vehicle. If the boot was on the other foot and an Ambulance was delayed coming to their family I am sure they would be more than happy to except that the shop down the road had to have a delivery. I think not and  is that the 'no win no fee' man knocking on the door?
Was supposed to be on Bus work tomorrow but was asked if I could go down to Plymouth and pick a coach up. Had to go away and think about that one!!!

9 Oct 2009


Well finally found some broadband (unsercured network) Sky promise me Tuesday. We have finally moved and just trying to sort out all the boxes and finding spaces for everything. Anyway the house is OK just has very strange shaped rooms so little difficult to fit the furniture in but we will get there. Very convinient for the town so will save some money on fuel. Little further to work but still only take 20-25 minutes so not to bad. Not much to report at work long days this week packed in 47 hours before Thursday and now off until Tuesday.

My weather data