11 February 2006

In The News

This Is Plymouth:12:00 - 11 February 2006
Hundreds of Plymouth Citybus drivers and staff are to meet tomorrow to discuss possible strike action. The threat of industrial action follows the sacking in January of bus driver Terry Prout for gross negligence.He was sacked following an accident in Milehouse on July 9 last year.If staff support industrial action a strike could be organised for the end of the month.Today, union bosses warned the bus firm to not underestimate feeling among staff.Mr Prout, a father-of-two from Whitleigh, was sacked on January 20. He told the Evening Herald that he had since been charged with driving without due care and attention and is due to appear before Plymouth Magistrates Court on March 9.In the accident, Mr Prout wrenched his shoulder and neck and suffered a groin injury. Shortly after the incident he suffered a nervous breakdown and hasn't worked since."All I want is my job back," the 41-year-old said. "The other drivers are all behind me because this sort of decision affects them as well."I got the okay from my doctor to meet with Citybus managers on January 20 to discuss the accident, and they sacked me."Citybus employs about 450 people. The Transport and General Workers Union (TGWU) represent all the platform staff and more than 300 bus drivers.

12:00 - 10 February 2006
Air Wales has today confirmed that it is pulling out of Plymouth. The Vale of Glamorgan-based operator said it was axing its Plymouth to Aberdeen, Cork and Newcastle routes from February 20.The airline blamed falling passenger numbers on the routes and said its European flights were performing more strongly.But it is to remain operating from Newquay and Exeter.

12:00 - 11 February 2006
The third Torpoint ferry was launched this morning - bringing the service up to full strength. The new vessel, the Lynher II, goes into operation after a week of trials by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency.The completion of improvements to the Torpoint to Devonport service comes as a relief to ferry users who have put up with long delays recently.The first new ferry went into service in December 2004. The new ferries are 50 per cent bigger than the 1960s ferries. The new vessels and slipway upgrade cost about £18million.

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