TOPS NEWS - MARCH 2009
An Esso station near Salisbury has apologised after their air and water machines broke down and staff refused to allow a taxi driver to refill her windscreen wash ‘because of health & safety fears’.
Take to the bicycle? In 2007, 9191 cyclists were injured with no other vehicle involved, 518 hit stationary objects, 208 collided with other riders and 89 hit people or animals. 1873 were injured after colliding with cars or vans and 129 with lorries and buses.
Four Croydon buses have been fumigated after becoming infested with cockroaches. Also in Croydon, speed humps are being removed as they cause extra noise and vibration to residents.
Boris Johnson has scrapped plans for a 20 mph blanket speed zone in London.
Northants Council is to look at the effectiveness of mobile cameras and may consider alternative measures to reduce accidents.
An ambulance was clamped outside London’s Royal Free Hospital while the driver helped a seriously ill patient inside.
Embassies in central London owe more than £1.5m in unpaid parking fines. One Sudanese diplomat owes £37,000 for 349 separate tickets. The worst offenders are diplomats from Sudan, Kazakhstan, Afghanistan, Egypt and Saudi Arabia.
The French Senate has agreed the construction of an F1 circuit at Flins, just west of Paris. The project will be known as Yvelines F1 - Automobile Valley. This is beside the vast Renault production plant at Flins.
The number of speed cameras in England and Wales rose from 2,000 to 5,500 in 6 years and speed camera offences rose from 262,000 in 1996 to 1,865,000 in 2006.
According to the RAC, motorists pay £45 billion a year in road taxes but only £9 billion is reinvested in the roads.
Since early 2008 F1 teams have been racing under a Memorandum of Understanding agreed with CVC in 2006. The MOU increased the teams’ annual prize money from 25% to 50% but it was not legally binding as not all teams had signed the Concorde Agreement. The teams have now agreed to sign, subject to ‘concessions’. CVC, which bought the F1 Group, has recently issued new shares in F1s Jersey based holding company (Delta Topco) which has increased Ecclestone’s stake to 5.3%.
Renault has officially said that it will quit F1 unless the team receives a bigger share of F1's revenues.
Donington Ventures Leisure are thought to have debts of £66.7m and require at least £40m to complete the GP circuit alterations. It is rumoured that Tom Wheatcroft has issued a writ for unpaid rent and security firm McKenzie Arnold has removed its men over alleged unpaid fees.
The City’s 2nd largest insurer, Aviva, has sold BSM (franchised network of apx 2,700 driving instructors), and its subsidiaries, which has gross assets totalling £36m, to Arques Industries AG. Norwich Union will change its name to Aviva within the next 2 years. Aviva shares dropped 33%.
Silverstone Circuit has donated £6000 raised from parking fines at the British Grand Prix to four local organisations.
The Government is compiling a database to track and store all travel made in and out of the UK each year. It will include names, addresses, telephone numbers, seat reservations, travel itineraries and credit card details for each journey. “It is essential in order to fight crime”.
In February a law came into force making it an offence to take a picture of a policeman. The wording is vague but the police may prevent anyone taking a picture they object to. Last year a plumber photographed a police van which ignored a no-entry sign, he was handcuffed and held for 5 hours before being released without charge.
The Belgian Grand Prix last year lost £3.4m. The race day attendance was just 52,000, which was 10,000 down on the previous year.
7.9 million motorists have failed to advise the DVLA of a changed address thus risking a £1,000 fine.
Max Mosley appeared before the Parliamentary Select Committee on Culture, Media and Sport to give evidence in relation to its inquiry into "Press Standards, Privacy and Libel".
Shares in Renault and PSA Peugeot Citroen rose sharply last week after talk of a merger between the groups.
Abridged version of TOPS NEWS sent to members