Today was the anniversary of the attacks on London. For many people it must have been a terrible ordeal.
Most people were extra cautious and quite rightly so. The police, bless them, were all over the place. At the stations, on the trains, and keeping an eye out. Which of course, is what they should be doing.
However, I’m not entirely sure that everyone is taking the situation seriously. Maybe, now that the attacks are a year behind us, some people have lost sight of the atrocities caused. 52 people lost their lives. Surely no-one can have brushed that aside yet?
But the reaction of a tube driver when I pointed out an abandoned bag was simply one of disinterest.
It was about 6:55 when I boarded the rear carriage of the train. The train was virtually empty - my stop is the end of the line - but there was one lone back-pack on it. Needless to say, this was worrying. I stood in the doorway of the carriage, looking for someone official to inform. Eventually the train driver peered into the carriage:
“There’s an abandoned bag here - you might want to check it out”, I told him.
“It’s probably just a bag that someone left behind.”
Well, yes, I know that. The chances are that it is perfectly fine, but I do not want to be the one that gets it wrong. Do you?
“Still, you need to check it.”
The man wandered off, muttering something. However, as he did not get back into the driver’s compartment, I can only assume that he went to consult someone about it.
Not fancying my chances, I decided that the best thing was to get off the train and use the main line instead.
It is now nearly 11pm, the end of the day. Clearly the driver was right. If that abandoned bag was anything to worry about then the whole of London would know about it now.
My point is this: If that had been a bomb, people would have died. Checking an abandoned bag may seem like paranoia but it is not. Transport For London are going to have make sure that their staff are quicker off the mark than the driver this morning.
Last year I passed through the Liverpool Street / Moorgate area about 20 minutes before the bombs went off. Others were not so lucky. Next time I may not be either.