Without a doubt one of the best BBC docs I’ve watched in the last couple of years is a new series called “The Tube.” As if you couldn’t guess it’s a show that takes viewers behind the scenes of the daily workings of the London Underground.
I’m a big fan of mass transit and I’ve done a lot of travelling and even with all its problems I’ve never ridden a better subway system than The Underground. It really is an amazing piece of infrastructure and the lifeblood of London. Without it, London couldn’t function as it does today.
I thought I knew quite a bit about The Underground but I still learned a lot from this program. Here’s some quick facts about the Tube that you may not have been aware of:
- London’s Underground carries approximately 3 million passengers per day.
- 60,000 trips each day are made by fare evaders or passengers failing to pay.
- Approximately 40 accidents involving trains occur each year, including people falling on the tracks and getting struck by a train. Tube workers call this incident a “one under.”
- People actually do successfully re-claim left items on the trains like smartphones, iPads and cameras. The Lost Property Office currently catalogs some 200,000 items. Some of the items left behind are, well, interesting.
- There are 270 stations and the busiest is Victoria Station.
- The last of the trains from the 1967 stock has just been retired.
- 191 new air conditioned trains are on the way; the first one began service on the Metropolitan line back in 2010. (Yay!)
Series 1 Episode 1
Series 1 Episode 2, part 1
Series 1 Episode 3
Series 1 Episode 4