FOI request detail

Oxford Circus air quality

Request ID: FOI-0620-2122
Date published: 17 August 2021

You asked

Are there plans in place to install better systems or improve/upgrade anything existing? Are current systems maintained/cleaned/inspected regularly? Are checks done on air quality to measure how dangerous it currently is? Are risk assessments carried out for it?

We answered

Thank you for your email received by TfL on 23 June 2021, asking for information about air quality at Oxford Circus and Highbury & Islington on the Victoria Line.

Your request has been considered in accordance with the requirements of the Environmental Information Regulations and our information access policy. I can confirm that we hold some of the information you require.

TfL’s cleaning regime is effective in ensuring that London Underground operates well within the Health and Safety Executive’s maximum limit for respirable dust, as is confirmed by regular monitoring.

Oxford Circus is generally our dustiest station by virtue of its depth, age and cross over of 3 intensively used deep tube lines. However the levels are all within the Health and Safety Executive’s limits for respirable and inhalable dust. Other factors that may influence the effects described include heat and low humidity, both of which are notable on the deep tube lines during the summer months.

In regard to cleaning and ventilation, we clean the fans and the grilles/dampers, not the shafts themselves. We carry out a full clean every 6 months. The shafts are cleaned on a 3 yearly basis.

We spend around £60m per annum cleaning our trains, stations and tunnels to ensure dust and particles are kept to an absolute minimum. New cleaning methods are currently being trialled and the most effective will be incorporated into TfL’s cleaning regime.

Please find attached the most recent set of station monitoring which covers Oxford Circus. Please note the report is still in draft and may be subject to change.  

If this is not the information you are looking for, or if you are unable to access it for any reason, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Please see the attached information sheet for details of your right to appeal as well as information on copyright and what to do if you would like to re-use any of the information we have disclosed.

Kind Regards

Eva Hextall
FOI Case Officer
Information Governance, General Counsel


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