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Where have all the MPs gone?
October 2013
With parliamentarians doing disappearing acts during most Commons debates, Jungle Ron scours the railway to discover where they're hiding.
The legacy from 2012
January 2013
Most media outlets agreed that the railway had a successful Olympics, but what lessons should the industry take from it?
Take your pick
August 2012
Would you rather change trains three times and pay through the nose, or enjoy the passing vista from the same seat for half the price?
Nothing flash about this mob
July 2012
How is it that meaningful jobs continue to disappear while money still pours into the pockets of valueless consultants?
Daydreams in the pie shop
April 2012
Waiting for his pasty to cool, Jungle Ron reflects on fairness and the government's assertion that "we're all in this together".
Things aint what they used to be
March 2012
In the new Britain where "we're all in this together", it's good to see a few inequalities survive for the sake of nostalgia.
Safety for the thinking man
January 2012
Rather than taking concerted action, 'thinking tidy' seems to be the sum total of Network Rail's latest initiative to cut slip, trip and fall injuries.
Am I standing of my head?
November 2011
Underperforming executives receive bonuses on top of inflated salaries whilst frontliners are thrown on the dole. Society has gone to pot.
RIP: Resting In Pieces (The Cess - An Obituary)
May 2011
The cess has served on-track workers for many years but it has now fallen foul of the railway accountant's priorities.
A message from your sponsor
April 2011
There's just no getting away from it - advertising clutter wherever you look. How long before COSS briefings are hijacked by the ad men?
We all remember when
March 2011
It's easy to look back through rose-tinted spectacles but some things really were better in days gone by. Whatever happened to litter bins?
Do Antipodeans do it better?
December 2010
Will Network Rail's new broom sweep clean and give his workforce what they have a right to expect - safe access along the line?
Gateway to the new world
October 2010
Jungle buys a ticket to enjoy the Whitehall farce being staged at a station in the north-east.
Well done yo'all
September 2010
The railway can be a very drab environment but thankfully a nationwide series of lineside flower shows have been arranged.
Cuts? What cuts?
August 2010
Cuts are coming and the railway will not be immune from them. But where will the axe fall? In the three-foot perhaps?
Safe cess or easy street?
July 2010
So Coucher is disappearing to his Scottish estate with a £640k bonus burning a hole in his pocket. What did he do for NR's trackworkers?
We have a problem
June 2010
Do you know what an approaching train is? No? Well fret no longer - RSSB's thumb twiddlers have developed a definition for you.
A visit to La La Land
April 2010
Does Network Rail's senior management team come from La La Land - a place where residents cannot embrace the real world?
Black is the new transparent
March 2010
Following the Prime Minister's lead, the railway discovers the benefits of redacting when it comes to important safety matters.
Can you 'ere me?
February 2010
Forget the Quiet Coach. Spend your journey relishing the inane utterances of those equipped with a fully-charged mobile but only half a brain.
A done deal - or is it?
December 2009
It is supposedly independent so why does RAIB invite comments from those with a vested interest before publishing its inquiries?
Information exchange
October 2009
Whilst the authorities knit fog with their intricate definitions, professional railwaymen end up at loggerheads, trying to make sense of it all.
What message is health and safety sending out?
August 2009
It's time to get our priorities right. Everyone's focussed on the welfare of wrongdoers whilst those who do right hardly get a look-in.
Nonconformity - a rose by any other name
July 2009
Jungle Ron likes a bit of variety in his life. How dull would train travel be if you always knew how to open the carriage door?
'Sorry' used to mean something
June 2009
With MPs bleeding the public purse for all they're worth, Jungle Ron becomes a flipping second home owner.
The great Red Nose backwards cess walk
April 2009
Relive the colour and excitement of the railway's first trackside ramble, featuring teams for all the major players and two obligatory rhinos.
No business like show business
February 2009
With brain-numbing reality shows filling the airwaves, it was only a matter of time before Network Rail jumped on the bandwagon.
The bleeding obvious
December 2008
The publication of Safety Bulletin IGS181 marked a new high in Network Rail's quest for absolute liability avoidance. In fact, it's award winning.
November 2008
Jungle Ron embraces change if its for the better. Trouble is, too many of the railway's changes seem designed just to irritate.
Sad demise means new starter
September 2008
Following the untimely demise of Sir Kitt Breaker, our Nomenclature Department has been swelled by the recruitment of another expert.
Now you see it...
August 2008
TV credits, on-train safety announcements, COSS packs: there's a huge pool of knowledge out there. Trouble is, you drown in the deluge.
When is a cess not a cess?
July 2008
Having worked trackside since Brunel was a lad, Jungle Ron thought he knew what a cess was. But he was mistaken. He thought he knew standard gauge too, only to find that RAIB had changed it.
Make yourself indispensible
April 2008
Congratulations, you've got the job. Now build your empire. Don't forget to sleep soundly as you'll never be convicted for your failings.
February 2008
Once upon a time, when two-man S&T teams were the norm, the absence of a lookout compromised safety. So, to prove their commitment, managers added an extra man. Why then does Network Rail see two-man teams as the way forward?
New recruits are always welcome
December 2007
The chill wind of financial frugality might be blowing through some parts of our industry but our safety department seems immune. Mona Littlemore has just joined us and there are more recruits to come.
What price a safe cess?
October 2007
Hang out the bunting! Network Rail is two years into a £2.5million cess refurbishment programme...apparently.
The wonders of RailwayWorld
September 2007
With £10billion of new investment burning in the industry's pocket, plans are unveiled for a new theme park - RailwayWorld. As Jungle Ron discovers, it promises to be every boy's dream day out.
I'm a lumberjack and I'm alright
July 2007
Has the Monty Python team just passed their PTS? Lineside trees seem to be coming down by the forest-load. Contractors obviously benefit but what about those who work on-track?
Back to the future
June 2007
With new technical inventions being brought online every day, just what will today’s young railwaymen look back on in 50 years time? Jungle dazes into his crystal ball.
How green is your trackwork?
May 2007
Everything has to be green nowadays. So what happened to the railway's infatuation with green zones - an affair which went sour due to irreconcilable differences.
The lost art of good communication
February 2007
Humans have had thousands of years to develop the skill of passing information from mouth to ear without cock-up intervening. And yet our success rate at getting it wrong is breathtaking.
That was the year that was
December 2006
2007 is almost upon us so it's time for my annual safety performance report. Not surprisingly, GNER's ongoing muck-spreading programme and the recruitment of more safety experts both feature heavily.
Slip, trip, fall
November 2006
No, it’s not a music hall act or firm of solicitors. Slip, trip and fall is the single largest cause of workplace accidents. So, with the words of ergonomics gurus ringing in their ears, safety departments are recruiting staff to tackle the problem.
A sublime vista
October 2006
After spending several weeks in the think-tank, I'm ready to announce the follow-up to RIMINI. Known as VISTA (Visual Indication of Scrap Total Amounts), it's a project to identify and record lineside scrap.
You've been E.coli-ed
September 2006
The shabby tale of GNER's muck-speading trains has exposed the pitiful culture of health and safety experts. They should be hanging their heads in shame.
Ergonomics for the jetset
August 2006
It's the in thing. And you spend a fortune jetsetting across the globe learning about it. But when will the ergonomics gurus turn their attention to the trackworker's workplace?
The muck spreader - update
June 2006
Weeks after Network Rail's report into discharges of toilet waste should have been available, health and safety reps still can't get hold of it.
Death by retirement
June 2006
You successfully survive half-a-century in the world of work. Then, without the backup of a Health and Safety rep, you set foot on the pavement. Ouch!
Making your mind up
May 2006
Decision making is a risky business. Do you go for 'due process', the nuclear option or a real-world approach. Jungle Ron weighs up the pros-and-cons.
The muck spreader
April 2006
It's one thing to be treated like sh*t. It's another to get covered in it. But that's what trackworkers on the East Coast Main Line are having to endure.
When I was a lad
March 2006
Much has improved since Jungle Ron first set foot on the railway. But the future is looking darker thanks to unused zips and a shortage of yellow paint.
A celebration of suc-cess?
October 2005
Get out the dinner jacket - it's the Safe Cess Awards!
The ultimate protection
September 2005
Forget handsignallers and disconnections. For really safe protection, check out the new T2R.
The search for Cecil
January 2005
Friends reunited? Not likely!
Surveying the cess
December 2004
Do trackworkers know what a cess is?
Helping the war effort
September 2003
How squaddies are preparing for conflict in Afghanistan.
Your greatest challenge
September 2002
Railwaymen make a heartfelt plea for assistance from Alan Titchmarsh and the Ground Force team.
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