IF PLANNING A DAY TRIP TO FRANCE, THE ADVICE IS FORGET IT!
So which traffic jam are you currently sitting in? The latest reports suggest that a FOUR HOUR DELAY is being suggested due to 'migrant activity' in the Port of Calais...
Julian Bray writes:Listeners to the Phil Williams programme on BBC Five Live Digital radio at around 10:20pm on Thursday 23rd July would have heard Julian Bray taking part in a live on air studio discussion centring on what promised to be the busiest day of the year (Friday 24th) with 8,000 flights and 14 million vehicles on UK roads, over the weekend. Judging by the number of irate tweets on twitter today, some people must have been sitting with cotton wool in their ears and wearing a blindfold. Mainly complaining about the state of the traffic and why were they not told!!!!
The privatised NATS air traffic control service flagged it up and the original press release is below. The release does not cover road traffic or the fact that due to 'migrant activity ' at the Calais Port- as the French port people put it, or the fact that tyre burning strikers on the French side helped close down the Channel Tunnel for a while.
You do wonder what would happen if members of the RMT (or any other Union) tried that over here. My betting is they would be arrested, charged and locked up. Burning Barricades cleared in minutes.So the question is why are the French Police just sitting on their hands just watching it all happen?
The cost to the UK haulage industry and the number of damaged or contaminated freight consignments is already of astronomical proportions. But all the time, the French seem to blame us for promoting the UK as the haven where migrants will be given free housing, money and a champagne lifestyle. Clearly they have yet to meet Ian Duncan Smith....
But what is to be done if you are already in one of the traffic jams, sitting in your car or recreational vehicle and possibly hyperventilating?
1. Tune into BBC LOCAL RADIO and also turn on the ADR traffic reports which should cut into any broadcast on your car radio and interrupt your CD music with the latest report.
2. Use the time to read up on your route using maps in addition to relying on SATNAV
3. Re check all your documentation and validity of your passports
4. Check you have in place valid travel and medical evacuation insurance. If sitting in a traffic jam in England. Still time to arrange and pay for cover over the internet. Too late if you are already on the ferry!
5. Don't try and find an alternative way as the police have pre-empted you, many junctions onto the M20 are now a temporary no entry.
6. Stay relaxed, resigned if you like, just pity those people hoping for a day trip to France. the official advice is forget it - go home...
A useful holiday packing checklist http://www.travelsmith.com/travelcenter/tools/printable-packing-checklist/ is invaluable even at this late stage. The American website has a good one, find it and some travel blogs at www.travelsmith.com
Air traffic controllers prepare for busiest day
Air traffic controllers at NATS are gearing up for what will likely be the busiest day of the year as millions of holidaymakers begin their summer getaway.
With many schools across England breaking up for the summer holidays, air traffic controllers across the UK are preparing to handle around 8,000 flights today (24 July) as people fly away in search of a well-earned break.
Routes to all the usual holiday destinations in Spain, the Canaries and southern Europe are expected to be busy and NATS has been preparing for weeks to ensure flights get away safely and with the minimum of delay.
July is always a busy month for air traffic with 230,000 flights recorded in July 2014, around 1,000 more a day compared to the usual monthly average. Preparation and planning for big peaks in demand begins months in advance with NATS analysing airline schedules and airport capacity to make sure it has the resources to safely handle the expected demand.
Air traffic controllers at NATS are gearing up for what will likely be the busiest day of the year as millions of holidaymakers begin their summer getaway today (24 July).
With many schools across England breaking up for the summer holidays, air traffic controllers across the UK are preparing to handle over 8,000 flights.
That plan is then constantly tweaked and updated.
Juliet Kennedy, Operations Director at NATS’ Swanwick Control Centre, Hampshire, said: “We have been working incredibly closely with our airline and airport partners to make sure the whole system is prepared and ready to handle today’s influx of passengers and flights. We want to make sure everyone can get away for their well-earned break easily, efficiently and safely.”
NATS manages the UK’s busy airspace from its two air traffic control centres at Prestwick, Ayrshire and Swanwick, Hampshire. Air traffic controllers at Swanwick have responsibility for the airspace over most of England and Wales, including the busy London airports where in excess of 3,500 flights take-off or land from just six runways.
Last year NATS choreographed safe journeys for a total of 2.2 million flights, an increase of 2.5% on the year before. Yet despite the growing demand to fly, 99.8% of those flights experienced no air traffic control delay at all.
JULIAN BRAY +44(0)1733 345581, Journalist, Broadcaster, Aviation Security & Operations Expert, Travel / Maritime & Cruise Industry, EQUITY, NUJ, Broadcast COOBE ISDN ++44 (0)1733 345020 (DUAL CODEC) SKYPE: JULIAN.BRAY.UK e&oe Cell: 07944 217476 or iPhone 0743 530 3145 www.aviationcomment.com # # # VENDOR 10476453 http://feeds.feedburner.com/BraysDuckhouseBlog