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Transportation is the fourteenth episode of the sixth season.


One morning Sir Handel was late. He was supposed to take building supplies up to the Wharf for Bulstrode. The supplies were kept on the loading platform at the Transfer Yards. Madge, who could sense that there would be trouble if the supplies didn’t arrive on time, set off for the Wharf with them. Five minutes later Sir Handel puffed in. “Where’s the supplies?” “Madge took them,” explained Bertram, who was shunting trucks in the yard. “How dare she take my load away from me!”

That afternoon he had a second chance to help out with the construction project up river. He arrived to collect the stone, when he saw the Horrid Lorries loaded with stone. “Stop!” said Lorry 2. “We’ve got news for you!” Sir Handel could tell from the smile that the news wouldn’t be good. “Shall I tell me the news?” asked Lorry 1. “No, I should! I’m the one who told him to stop-“ “Shut up!” snarled Lorry 3. “We’re doing your job helping out with the construction project!” Sir Handel was cross.

As he worked at the Transfer Yards shunting trucks, he grumbled, and took his anger out on the trucks. As he shunted some flatbeds over to the cranes, he found Madge there. “Hello-“ “I’m not speaking to you!” he rudely interrupted. “You took away my job!” He puffed away, leaving Madge to feel hurt.

The next day he was working at the Wharf. Lots of cargo was coming in and out, and the cranes were behind loading and unloading barrages. Bulstrode arrived with a delivery of coal. “Colin! I must be unloaded at once!” he commanded. “Sorry Bulstrode, but I’m busy at the moment. Maybe in a little while?” Bulstrode looked around. All the other docks were taken. He waited for seventeen minutes before he could be unloaded. “This is your fault!” he grumbled to the cranes as he roared out of the Wharf.

Things calmed down by that afternoon. Bulstrode returned with a load of crates. He floated up to the dock where Colin was situated. “What happened this morning?” he demanded. “A few barrages were late and others took their time loading and unloading the barrages.” Sir Handel, who had been shunting near by overheard this. It reminded him of yesterday. “Maybe there’s something wrong on the route up river!”

After he’d finished work he puffed up the line that led to the villages along the river. At the level crossing the gates were closed. He saw a truck that was carrying an oil tanker had collided with another truck, with a trailer of its own. Butch and Kelly were cleaning up the mess while drivers honked and lorries took their temper out on them. “Another accident…sixth one this week…” thought Sir Handel. He realized now that it wasn’t all his fault. The road was soon clear and traffic started moving again. Sir Handel could spot the horrid lorries looking angrily, while Madge looked worried.

That evening the Thin Controller came to see Sir Handel. “I’ve heard about you being late, and it is because the railway hasn’t kept up with keeping the rails safe. I’ve heard you’d dealt with sheep blocking the line. Furthermore, it has been decided that you’ll continue to help with the construction project up the river.” He rode away for home, while Sir Handel puffed to the Transfer Yards. He found Madge resting in a shed. “I’m sorry for being rude. I understand now that you were trying to help me.” “Of course,” smiled Madge. “We lorries and barrages work on the railway too, so if you’re late, and we’re working alongside you, we’ll help make up for what’s happening.” “And, I do play a role in causing confusion too,” added Sir Handel, “but there are other things in some cases that also cause trouble too.” The two friends smiled, and began to talk about how things could be improved upon.