NEWS of the WEEK
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"The wheels of wealth will be slowed by all difficulties of transport, at whatever points arising, as a carriage is by the roughness of the roads ovef -which it IIIIIS."—John Beattie Crozier.
YORKSHIRE EVIDENCE TO WAGES COMMITTEE, It seems probable that the employers' and employees' panels of the York-. shire Area Joint Conciliation Board will each submit separate statements for the information of the Government committee set up to consider the regulation of wages on the goods side of the roadtransport industry. It is anticipated that the employers' panel will submit not only written infOrmation, but will. also present oral evidence to the committee, through one or more witnesses.
Apart from dealing with the position of C-licence holders, the evidence will, no doubt, take the form of a comprehensive case in support of the Yorkshire employers' attitude towards the wages of employees of A and B-licence holders, and their opposition to the introduction of Grade 1 wages in the Yorkshire Traffic Area.
This question of Grade 1 wages is one of growing importance, because, according to the award made by Sir Richard Redmayne, the chairman of the National Joint Conciliation Board and of its appeals committee, Grade 1 is due to operate in most of the industrial districts of Yorkshire as from September 30.
Modernizing the Kingston By-pass.
The Minister of Transport has approved, in principle, a scheme for the modernization of the Kingston By-pass, and it is proposed to revise the existing layout and to construct dual carriageways with cycle tracks. At present there is only one 30-ft. carriageway, with a single footpath along certain sections. The road has a bad record of accidents, and is being used by an increasing volume of traffic.
For these reasons the Minister thinks that steps should be taken to provide, over the whole length of the by-pass, two 20-ft. carriageways, separated by a central reserve, . two 6-ft. cycle tracks, except where service roads exist, and two 6-ft. footpaths.
The Kingston By-pass forms part of the London-Portsmouth road, and•was constructed between 1923 and 1927, at a cost of approximately £400,000.
RIO The growth of traffic using the road is shown by figures obtained at four census points in 1931 and 1935, the total being 41,283 tons in the former and 72,764 tons in the latter.
MR. A. Buena, manager in Iran for the Leyland concern, is on a visit to this country.
SIR ATJSTEN CHAMBERLAIN Will be the principal guest at the dinner of the National Lubricating Oil and Grease Federation, to be held at Grosvenor House, LondOn, on October 21.
MR. j, H. STIRk, East Midland Licensing. Authority, will be sitting in the North-Western Area, during the next two weeks, to hear applications for goods-vehicle licences, owing to the illness of Mr. W. Chamberlain.
DR. H. F. HAWORTH, Ph.D., M.Sc., M.I.Mech:E., chief technical officer of Leyland Motors, Ltd., who, since April, has made an extensive tour, on behalf of the company, of South America, including Brazil, Uruguay and the Argentine, is shortly returning to England.
MR. THOMAS HOHNS13Y, who has resigned his post as general manager of the North-Eastern Area of the L.N.E. Railway Co., on appointment as chairman of the Durham Coat Sales Control Committee, has taken an active part in the carrying out of the railway policy of acquiring an interest in road passenger-transuort undertakings. He has successfully conducted many negotiations in this direction and has represented the L.N.E.R. on the boards of several of the large bus companies.
NEW DRIVERS' LICENCES ACT BECOMES LAW.
The Road Traffic (Driving Licences) Act, 1936, has now become law. This . measure provides that a person who does not hold a driver's licence may, under orders from a licensed driver, act as steersman of a. vehicle limited to a legal maximum speed of 5 m.p.h.
It also legalizes the issue of provisional heavy-goods-vehicle drivers' licences of the?,e months' validity. Section 3 ot the Act refers to the issuing of licences authorizing the holders to drive only certain types of vehicle.
Purihase Extends Pidcfords Northants Connection.
The Commercial Motor is officially informed that Pickfords, Ltd., is carrying on negotiations for the purchase of the goodwill and assets of 'Express Transport , Service (Wellingborough), Ltd., Compton Road, Wellingborough. The latter concern is interested principally in long-distance haulage and has an authorized capital of £12,000 (210,630 issued).
Railway B-licence Plea Fails.
A railway contention that an applicant should be considered within the B category was rejected at Liverpool, last week, by Mr. A. Henderson, acting for the North-Western Licen,sing Authority. Mrs. J. B. Gibbens, 51, Church Road West Kirby, applied for A licences for two vehicles of 30 cwt. each, formerly operated by her late husband, Mr. G. Gibbens, as Messrs. G. Gibbens and Son.
Mr, J. P. Wilson, for the applicant, said that, according to the objectors, it should really be a B-licence application, because they contended that Mrs. Gibbens had a business of her own as sand and gravel merchant.
The position was that the applicants vehicles were employed on building work and they were frequently sent to collect sand from Hoylake foreshore from a merchant holding the rights over this sand. The merchant would not supply the sand to builders unless they sent their own vehicles. Mrs. Gibbens, as agent of the builder, paid him Is. for the sand. Subsequently, this amount was reclaimed with the haulage charges.
Mr. Wilson submitted that, in the circumstances, it was not a separate business. Furthermore, if it were, many other hauliers holding A licences should, in fact, have B licences, as this procedure was recognized in the building trade.
Mr. Henderson! "My ruling is that this case is one. which I can deal with under Section 11(3) (b). and that ark A licence is the appropriate one." CANADIAN ROAD TRANSPORT TO BE RESTRICTED?
A message from Ottawa states that Dominiob and provincial 'Government representatives will meet there, in the near future, to discuss the initiation of uniform laws throughout Canada for the regulation of road transport.
At the Dominion provincial conference held in Ottawa last December, a special committee appointed to study the subject submitted 11 recommendations, which were agreed upon by the conference as a whole. The committee suggested that a sub-committee be appointed to collect full information on the operation of lorries and buses, par
ticularly with regard to rates. An official of the Department of Transport has been busily engaged in gathering this information.
It is probable that if recommendations be adopted at the conference, new transport legislation may be introduced in the next session of the Dominion and provincial Parliament. .
Midland Secretary of C.M.U.A. Resigns.
At a recent meeting of the West Midland Division of the C.M.U.A., Mr. John Howell, hon. secretary of the Division for the past 15 years, tendered his resignation. Owing to the increased membership of the R.A.C., Mr. Howell said that he found his time . fully occupied with his duties as Midland manager for that body. Furthermore, the anticipated increase in work due to the C.M.U.A.-A.R.O. merger meant that he would not be able to devote sufficient time to the task.
The committee passed a vote of thanks to Mr. Howell and asked him to continue his work Until a new appointment is made. The appointment of a full-time secretary is, we understand, to receive careful consideration.
Low-height Buses for Northern Ireland.
An exceptionally low overall height is one of the features of the 15 new Leyland double-deck buses built for the Northern Ireland Road Transport Board. As the buses have to pass under Templepatrick railway bridge, near Antrim, the overall height has been reduced to under 13 ft. 3 ins. Even so, large notices are fixed on the bridge, instructing drivers to stop, find the centre of the road and to proceed cautiously under the bridge. In times of exceptional rainfall, the road is often flooded owing to the drop in the level.
Other features include an extra emergency door on the front off side of the lower salOon, folding doors that completely enclose the rear platform, and Clayton Dewandre heating units in both saloons.
Hebridean Transport Problems Investigated.
In order to gain first-hand experience of transport problems in the Western Isles, Sir Godfrey Collins, Secretary of State for Scotland, is visiting the Hebrides and sampling the various conveyances used by the islanders. At that, Sir Godfrey heard the opinions of the crofters on the need for a bridge. FURTHER BAN ON HORSES IN LONDON.
It was announced last week by the Minister of Transport that a regulation will shortly be made prohibiting vehicles which do not exceed 5 m.p.h., horse-drawn vehicles and hand carts, from using certain streets in London during peak traffic hours.
The streets affected are : —Regent Street (south of Princes Street); Haymarket; part of New Bond Street; Old Bond Street; New Oxford Street; and High golhorn The ban will apply between noon and 7 p.m. on Mondays to Fridays, and from noon to 3 p.m. on Saturdays.
L.M.S. Appeal Dismissed.
The appeal of the L.M.S. Railway Co. against the West Midland Licensing Authority's grant to Beech Transport Co., Ltd., was dismissed, and not allowed, as stated in last week's issue. Costs against the railway company were granted. In the special circumstances of the case, the Appeal Tribunal decided to allow the Beech concern an additional 2 tons, making a total of an extra 6 tons at Coventry.
10-ton Loads on 2-f-tonners?
Reports of county authorities show that close attention is being paid to the gross laden weights of goods • vehicles, and many prosecutions have been brought.
Worcestershire General Purposes Committee states that an active policy" has been pursued in this connection and that, of the 219 vehicles stopped and examined or weighed, 55 were overloaded. The committee draws the attention of the Minister of Transport to the use of vehicles weighing under 2i tons unladen and carrying loads which appear to be in excess of those legally allowed for heavy motorcars.
According to this statement, some vehicles weighing slightly less than 2i tons must be hauling pay-loads of about 10 tons, which is incredible.
When Records Should Be Filled In By Drivers.
Sir Thomas Higham, chairman of the Church bench of magistrates, declared, last week, that it was the driver's duty to write up his record form immediately he had his break, and not at the end of the working day.
Concerning the 'owner's liability, Mr. H. Backhouse submitted that the police had not proved that the owner had not taken all reasonable steps to ensure that a record should be kept. The driver had a record sheet. He had had one previously and filled it up correctly, and, so far as the owner knew, it would be returned correctly completed.
Supt. Pagert said it might appear unfortunate for the owner, but the police were compelled to abide by the regulations. Having proved that a person was the registered owner, and that the regulations were not complied with, he suggested it followed that the owner failed to cause the record to be kept, Both the owner and driver were fined. MR. HENDERSON REFUSES TO RESTRICT B LICENCE.
At Liverpool, last week, Mr. A. Henderson, acting on . behalf of the North-Western Licensing Authority, refused to restrict a B licence, on renewal, to 50 miles, as requested by railway counsel. ' Mr. M. Brook, trading as Messrs. Stead and Brook, 3, Bridge Grove, Southport, hay, straw and corn merchants and carriers, applied for a renewal of his B licence for three vehicles (4f tons).
For the railways, Mr. R. H. Mais contended that the applicant had not fully utilized his radius for building plant and materials, and that he should be restricted to 50 miles. The applicant's main business as a hay, Straw and corn merchant, he argued, was on the decline, and he was coming more and more into haulage. . It would apper, Mr. Mais suggested, that if no restriction were placed on his activities, Mr. Brook would become almost entirely a haulier.
On being assured that for 10 years haulage had been a definite part of Mr. Brook's business and that the suggested restriction would interfere with his work, Mr. Henderson granted the licence without modification.
Death of A.E.C. Area Manager.
We regret to record the death of Mr. E. M. Batchelar, who was for 11 years attached to the sales organization of the Associated Equipment Co., Ltd. Joining the company in 1925 as a sales representative, he was appointed area manager for Manchester at a time when the company maintained its own branch depot in that city. He came south in 1930 as area manager for the (northern) Home Counties and, in the following year, became the company's representative for municipal contracts. At the time of the 1933 Olympia Show he was taken seriously ill, and was unable to resume his duties until late in 1934, when he returned to the territory vacated in 1931.