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  1. ITV Report

Petition for driverless Tube trains gaining support

An online petition demanding driverless trains has been launched as London Underground workers prepare to walk out in a dispute over the 24-hour Tube.

Would driverless trains be a welcome addition to the Underground? Credit: PA Wire

The petition from Richard Holloway, deputy cabinet member for sports, leisure and customer services at Westminster City Council, on change.org, has so far attracted 5,882 supporters since it launched on 11 August.

Many of those signing the petition have complained that the tube drivers are 'holding Londoners to ransom' and that they already earn enough money. One signatory wrote: "I am sick of having my life held to ransom by ungrateful greedy people who are trying to milk tfl. This impacts the public more than anything which is selfish. Fire them all and be done with this."

Rail unions are currently having last-minute talks with London Underground at the conciliation service Acas in an effort to find an agreement over the introduction of a 24-hour tube service, scheduled to begin on 12 September.

If no deal is found, drivers will walk out for 24 hours on Tuesday afternoon and then again from Thursday, effectively disrupting the Underground for four days this week.

In his petition Mr Holloway points to other cities where driverless trains are already in operation, as well as some lines in London, and believes investment in new technology is needed now.

Driverless trains are a reality in many advanced cities in the world. Many of London Underground's lines are already able to be operated remotely. The DLR has been operating driverless trains since 1987 with an impeccable safety record. Additional investment in the technology and equipment required to operate driverless trains is needed and we ask that the necessary funds are found to move this forward quickly. They would be able to operate 24/7 for Londoners without strikes.

– Richard Holloway

The petition has also gathered support on social media where the hashtag #driverlesstrains has attracted messages of support.

However, the petition has not won universal support.

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