by Suw on January 19, 2006

Walking towards Bank station just now, my train of thought was somewhat derailed by two fire engines hurtling round the corner. Then an ambulance. A HEMS car (Tom can explain what that is.) Then the police, in cars and on bikes. More sirens.
By this time I'm at Bank and the entrance is closed. More police. More ambulances. Wouldn't be surprised to hear a chopper in a second. No one has a clue what's going on, though. Clearly the station is closed – the cluster of emergency services vehicles and personnel attest to that.
I start walking to the nearest bus stop.
What you have to realise about Bank is that is has about 9 different entrances, and links underground to Monument station. Obviously all entrances are shut. But each one seems to have a fixed sign on it that says 'When this entrance is shut, use X other entrance'. As most of the entrances are out of sight of each other, there's no knowing that there's no point walking to another because it too will be shut, no way of knowing that the emergency services are on site unless you walked past them. I see people going from entrance to entrance, trying to figure out what's going on.
No gate has a temporary sign saying 'Station closed'. There are no LUL personnel around to tell you.
How hard would it be to actually put up a sign on the gates when the station is shut? A little information goes a long way and it'd save us punters from a lot of confused milling about.

Anonymous January 19, 2006 at 3:16 pm
Anonymous January 20, 2006 at 5:34 am

The HEMS car is the car that the Helicopter Emergency Medical service use when the helicopter is either broken, going for a service, asleep because it's night (because you really don't want to land on top of telephone wires) or is otherwise not flying.
It's got a doctor and a paramedic on it and they still wear their orange flight suits…
If you have HEMS and the fire service turning up then it's probably a 'one under', someone has either jumped, fell, or been pushed under a train. (60% survival rate at last count). Either that or someone has phoned in a bomb alert and HEMS aren't doing anything exciting.

Anonymous January 20, 2006 at 7:53 am

Calm down, a bit of milling about is a good thing. It's what a city is for. I don't know about a lot though. Here's what happened. Understandably the control rooms must have gone apeshit and sent everything.

Anonymous January 20, 2006 at 9:18 am

Thank you Tom! I knew you'd come through. 😉 (And sorry for not linking – i wrote this one on my Treo.
Can see why the control room went apeshit and sent everything. Can't see why they didn't put 'station closed' signs up immediately. Personally, I think a little info goes a long way. My days are long enough without adding in additional travel difficulties. As it was, I turned up at Bank at about 1:50pm, and decided immediately upon seeing the HEMS turn up that I'd take the bus so avoided a lot of milling.

Anonymous January 20, 2006 at 12:34 pm

Golly Suw, I'd have thought that 'Bad News Travels Fast.'

Anonymous January 20, 2006 at 4:18 pm

I suspect the news wasn't quite bad enough to reach any sort of reasonable speed above walking pace. Perhaps the ultimate speed constant is not actually the speed of light, but the speed of a really, really bad piece of news.

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