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TFL to invest millions in London buses

A London bus Credit: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire/Press Association Images

TfL has announced a multi-million pound business plan for buses in the capital.

It includes hundreds of extra buses and 25 million pounds of investment into driver training.

Drivers will learn how to communicate better with customers and respond more quickly to their needs.

Complaints soar over 'unbearable' heat on Boris buses

Complaints have soared this summer over the sweltering conditions of Boris Johnson's new Roadmaster-style buses, according to new figures found by Politics.co.uk.

Faulty air conditioning and a lack of openable windows have made journeys notorious for their "sauna" conditions.

More than 150 official complaints have been logged with Transport for London in June and July this year, figures under a freedom of information request revealed.

Many passengers also took to Twitter to complain about the "unbearable" heat:

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One person every day hospitalised in bus crashes

New figures released by Transport for London have shown that one person is hospitalised every day in a bus crash in the capital.

Crashes like this cause one person to be hospitalised every day Credit: Reuters

The report showed that 86 people had been taken to hospital in accidents over the past three months, which equates to an average of one each day. Boris Johnson will face questions on the figures at Mayor's Question Time later this afternoon.

Bus drivers 'saddened' by new technology

Dr Gary Pritchard, from Newcastle University's Digital Interaction Group, said:

Many of these guys have been driving a bus for upward of 30 years and take real pride in their job and the skills it requires.

So while most of them genuinely want to provide the best service and recognise the benefits of the system, particularly for passengers, some of them also feel threatened by the constant scrutiny and saddened by the lack of social interaction it brings.

The technology has fundamentally changed the job for bus drivers... ultimately, it means they can't always put customer care and comfort first

– Dr Gary Pritchard, Newcastle University

TfL bus times technology makes drivers 'less considerate'

GPS technology fitted to all of London's buses to keep them arriving at regular intervals is ruining the relationship between bus drivers and passengers, according to a new study.

iBus technology was fitted to every one of the capital's buses in 2008 as part of a £117 million TfL upgrade. It allows passengers to see when the next bus will arrive at a bus stop and lets control rooms tell drivers to speed up or slow down to maintain gaps between buses.

The study claims timing technology makes drivers less considerate Credit: Reuters

But a study by Newcastle University found pressure to keep to time can lead to drivers rushing, not chatting to passengers and not waiting for them to sit before setting off - or deliberately dawdling to take up time.

Drivers who were interviewed by the researchers admitted "forgoing their usual considerate nature" if the bus behind was getting too close.

"It takes a lot of the one-on-one away from you" said one.

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Warning of cuts to London buses

A charity has warned that cutsto bus services are reaching critical levels - and that major reductions to services in the capital could be on the way in the next few years.

Cuts to London bus services could be on the way

The Campaign for Better Transport says it's concerned about reductions to London bus funding, after finding 47 per cent of local authorities in England and Wales have reduced their spending.

They warned that TfL is one of the authorities likely to make sweeping cuts over the next couple of years - with most of these taking effect by 2017.

New London buses to run on food waste

The buses will use a 20 per cent blend of biodiesel, which comes from food waste. Credit: Nick Ansell/PA Wire

A new fleet of buses running on recycled food waste will be officially launched in Barking today.

The pilot scheme will see 120 newly converted buses using a 20 per cent blend of biodiesel as part of the Mayor's mission to cut carbon emissions in London.

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