30 January 2012

Tube more efficient under Boris

Boris Johnson has fought tirelessly to improve London transport since he entered office and today Channel 4 News FactCheck confirmed what we already knew: the Underground is more efficient today, under Boris, than it was under Ken Livingstone, and there have been fewer disruptive delays to Londoners’ travel.

An election leaflet put out by one of Livingstone’s wealthy union backers – the Transport and Salaried Staffs’ Association (TSSA) - claims that “Fares might be soaring, but the service is plummeting! Delays and line closures have become a daily part of Londoners’ lives”. FactCheck’s investigation revealed that not only is this claim wrong, it’s very wrong.

The report finds that under Boris Johnson fewer stations were closed, far fewer journeys were delayed and excess journey time has fallen. The most telling finding was the number of hours the Mayor saved passengers overall - under Boris Johnson Londoners lost an astonishing one million fewer passenger hours over an average four-week period than they did under Livingstone.

Channel 4 concluded: “The figures speak for themselves, and the difference in passenger hours lost – an average of a million a month more under Ken – is particularly striking. This isn’t the final word on Ken versus Boris, but if Boris Johnson’s opponents want to put his stewardship of public transport at the heart of this election battle, they will have to make a convincing case, at least as far as the Underground is concerned.”

This is the latest in growing number of challenges to Mr. Livingstone’s erroneous claims about transport. Just last week, Channel 4 exposed as “Fiction” Mr. Livingstone’s claim that he could cut fares without slashing future investment or hitting services.

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