FOI request detail

Tube Driver Chanting

Request ID: FOI-2554-2324
Date published: 07 November 2023

You asked

There was evidence on social media of a tube driver chanting a political slogan over the tannoy on 21/10/23 Further to this please advise what action, if any, is being taken as a result. Please provide copies of email correspondence relating to this matter.

We answered

Our Ref:         FOI-2554-2324
Thank you for your request received on 21 October 2023 asking for information about the media reports that suggest political comments were made by a London Underground driver using the train’s public address system.
Your request has been considered in accordance with the requirements of the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act and our information access policy. I can confirm that we do hold the information you require.
The Tube Driver involved has now been identified and suspended whilst we continue to fully investigate the incident in line with our policies and procedures.
Unfortunately, to provide the correspondence you have requested would exceed the ‘appropriate limit’ of £450 set by the Freedom of Information (Appropriate Limit and Fees) Regulations 2004.
Under section 12 of the FOI Act, we are not obliged to comply with a request if we estimate that the cost of determining whether we hold the information, locating and retrieving it and extracting it from other information would exceed the appropriate limit. This is calculated at £25 per hour for every hour spent on the activities described.
We have estimated that it would cost over £450 to provide a response to your current request. This is because it is estimated that it would take in excess of 18 working hours to retrieve and compile the information you have requested.
When requests for email correspondence are received the FOI Case Management team may use a search tool which allows us to conduct company-wide email searches using keywords, dates and email addresses. The more specific a requester can be as to what they are looking for, the more we can narrow the search and therefore stand a better chance of a more relevant or focused result. A search will then return an amount of ‘hits’ which potentially contain information relating to the search terms used. Each ‘hit’ is a single email, although that email will often consist of a chain of emails containing the search term at least once.
It is likely that several teams will have received and sent several emails regarding this incident, including but not limited to Customer Services, the Press Office, and the station team. Therefore in order to begin to identify the information you have requested we would need to do a company-wide search, for terms such as ‘announcement’ or ‘Palestine’. We would need to manually review all of the emails identified by the search in order to extract and collate the relevant emails. However, it is unlikely to capture all of the relevant information as other terms may have been used.
To help bring the cost of responding to your request within the £450 limit, you may wish to consider narrowing its scope so that we can more easily locate, retrieve and extract the information you are seeking. If you want to refine your request or make a FOI Act request in future, please bear in mind that the FOI Act allows you to request recorded information held by us. You should identify the information that you want as clearly and concisely as you can, specifying the types of document that you are looking for. If there are specific questions you have then we may be able to provide a response to those, however please note that as this is an ongoing investigation some information may be withheld.
Although your request can take the form of a question, rather than a request for specific documents, we do not have to answer your question if it would require the creation of new information or the provision of a judgement, explanation, advice or opinion that was not already recorded at the time of your request.
Please note that we will not be taking further action until we receive your revised request.
In the meantime, if you have any queries or would like to discuss your request, please do not hesitate to contact me.
Please see the attached information sheet for details of your right to appeal.
Yours sincerely
Gemma Jacob
Senior FOI Case Officer
FOI Case Management Team
General Counsel
Transport for London

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