ROAD TRANSPORT WASTAGE AT LIVERPOOL DOCKS nrJE are sending you
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a list concerning the standing " time of our vehicles at Liverpool docks during the period December 23, 1947, to January 12, 1948. We think you will agree that it is a most serious and disgraceful state of affairs. We shall be glad if, through your journal, you can bring this to the notice of the authorities concerned and of the public.
Stoke-on-Trent. L. BREWER.
(For The Basford Garage and Haulage Co.) iThe list sent by Mr. Brewer concerns standing time while waiting in the precincts of Sandon Dock, and does not include that for unloading. The work was in connection with only two steamers, the s.s. " Somerset " for Australia and the s.s. " Pipiriki" for New Zealand. The figures given refer only to these, but as the same thing is going on in respect of other steamers, it is estimated that the total time lost during 21 days, with 10 lorries running regularly to the Mersey Docks, was well over 200 hours. On a single day with one lorry the wastage varied from three to eight hours. The biggest number of vehicles at Sandon Dock on any one day was five, when the total waiting time was 36 hours, In all, the number of days was 13, the number of lorries 37, and the waiting time 130 hours. We have previously drawn attention to such serious losses at the docks, which have also been adversely commented upon by the Licensing Authority for the Area concerned.—En.] APPRENTICES AND THE CALL-UP FOR THE SERVICES I READ with great interest your article "Taking a 'Long View of Labour Problems," published in your issue dated January 16. There was, however, no reference. in this to the present call-up of young men of military age. Whilst these can apply for deferment in special cases, -there is no guarantee that they will be successful, and I suggest that the present method concerning apprentices is unsatisfactory.
I am wondering what the position will be regarding recruits for the transport industry under its new masters. It seems doubtful whether it will produce' men with the required all-round knowledge in these days of specialists.
Tolworth, W. T. SEARLE.
BAD PARKING WHICH CAUSES ACCIDENTS (IN page 577 of your issue dated January 9, you ‘-"published a photograph taken in Leeds, and I was particularly pleased to note your comments on this concerning the bad parking of a car near a road intersection, close to the traffic lights and a pedestrian crossing, also facing in the wrong direction. It has been my experience, also that of all our drivers, that this is a frequent habit It should be made illegal, even in day time. Surely it is no trouble for a driver to turn around so that he stops on the correct side of the road. I think it can safely be said that very few people understand that it is an offence, even to-day,, to park vehicles on the wrong side of the road after dark, and I am sure that this practice is the cause of numerous accidents.
Is there anything that your journal, with its many interests, can do about this? S. G. RUSHTON.
Nottingham. (For Donaldson Wright, Ltd.).
HOW DUNLOP ORGANIZE THE QUICK TURN-ROUND .THE recent announcement that no railway truck was at Fort Dunlop for more than 24 hours has resulted in a number of inquiries regarding the system on which we work. This quick turn-round of trucks is so vital a factor in achieving the Nation's industrial targets that I feel you may care to make our procedure here more widely known, although there may be production centres for which it will not be wholly appropriate.
Organization rather than unloading plant is the key to our success. Our system has to be flexible because, as many of our major lines are imported, there is considerable fluctuation in the number of trucks coming in. Advance advice is received of deliveries about to be made and the position is under the daily observation of the departmental managers concerned. I myself getting a daily report on it.
Between 6.30 and 8 each morning we take a stock check so that, by 8 a.m., the number of trucks to be unloaded is exactly known. Our traffic controller has these trucks shunted at once to the points where they are to be unloaded, and, simultaneously, advices are sent to the heads of departments responsible for the unloading.
As far as the unloading itself goes, our experience is that it can expeditiously be carried out only by varying the number of gangs of men according to the amount of materials to be handled. There are four men to the gang and their leading hand is responsible for the gang's work, the count, and so on. Where conditions allow, men are paid by results; in other cases there is a special flat rate.
It is a pleasure to me to be able to add that everyone on the job is thoroughly alive to the need for unloading and loading as quickly as it can be done. They will go to it with a will. W. W. POSTER, General Works Manager (For Dunlop Rubber Co., Ltd.). Fort Dunlop, Birmingham, 24.
MORE ON THE C-LICENSEE QUESTION IN his attempt to whitewash the alleged irregular operation by the C-licensee, the secretary of the Traders' Road Transport Association tells us nothing which is not already common knowledge and very elementary. I would remind Mr. FitzGerald, however, that there is-seldom smoke without fire.
In an average week, I discuss their affairs with at least half a dozen hauliers whose particular business it is to handle building and road-making plant, materials and rubbish. Often they complain, very bitterly indeed, of this element of unfair competition, and I am inclined to accept their evidence in preference to that which seems to me to be little more than surmise.
London, S.W.11. E. H. B. PALMER.