Thank you, transport heroes

09 April 2020

Tonight at 8pm I’ll be on my doorstep, showing my support for those currently battling coronavirus by clapping for the NHS. Many across the country will be doing the same as we recognise the tremendous job that those working in healthcare are doing.

I’m sure that for most of us our applause extends to others doing vital jobs in other areas of need. We all know about supermarkets rising to the challenge to ensure we can buy enough food and we still see refuse collectors emptying our bins each week.

As the transport watchdog, we are seeing a herculean effort from those providing a wide range of services. We have commissioned a poem, Thank You, to show appreciation for our transport colleagues. Please see the video at the bottom of this blog.

We can see those on the transport front line out there day after day ensuring that essential workers get to work. Bus drivers across the country continue to provide a vital service, whether getting nurses to their shift at hospital or the supermarket checkout assistant to their till. Train drivers, conductors and ticket office staff continue to ensure that much needed trains run to where we need them to go. Trams remain in operation as another vital way that those who need to travel can still do so.

On our roads, traffic officers keep our roads open, dealing with breakdowns and incidents. Keeping our motorways and major ‘A’ roads open is as important as ever, as we rely on those who drive lorries and vans, and other delivery services.

Tonight, when we are able to show just a small token of our appreciation, we should also think of those that we don’t usually see – hidden from public view but who all do an equally important job in transport.

Buses will be thoroughly cleaned and maintained by an army of people that help to stamp out the virus. Control rooms and back office staff across the country will still be coordinating and responding to things as they happen on different modes of transport. Whether operating cameras on the motorway to monitor incidents, scheduling emergency timetables at short notice, or changing staff rotas to cover essential routes, those we don’t usually see should hear our applause tonight.

Providing vital transport services in the current climate will be very stressful and challenging for all those working hard for us. Wherever people are doing their bit to keep us all safe, healthy and moving, tonight we salute all of our transport heroes.

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