Barometer

Which NHS staff have enjoyed the biggest salary increases? 

Saudi women drivers; broadband vs GDP; hurricane hierarchy

2 November 2013

9:00 AM

2 November 2013

9:00 AM

What can they do?

Saudi women took to the wheel in defiance of laws preventing them from driving. Some recent freedoms Saudi women have gained:

— From this year they have been allowed to ride bicycles, although only around parks and recreation facilities and when accompanied by their official male guardian.
— From this year sports have been introduced to girls’ schools for the first time.
— From 2015 they will be allowed to vote (and stand as candidates) in municipal elections for the first time.
— Laws requiring women to ask their male guardian for permission to marry, get a job, open a bank account or have surgery were officially abolished in 2008, although tradition still demands that they do.
— Women are now accepted in university courses in pharmacy and law.

Net gains

Ofcom criticised broadband connection speeds, in spite of heavy investment by the government. Is there a relationship between average broadband speeds and economic growth?

Ave. broadband speed (Mbps)
South Korea 13.3
Japan 12
Switzerland 11
Hong Kong 10.8
Latvia 10.6
Netherlands 10.1
Czech Republic 9.8
US 8.7
Sweden 8.4
UK 8.4
Economic growth in 2012
South Korea 2%
Japan 1.9%
Switzerland 1%
Hong Kong 1.5%
Latvia 5.6%
Netherlands -1%
Czech Republic -1.3%
US 2.2%
Sweden 0.7%
UK 0.3%


Source: Akamaii/World Bank

When the wind blows

The Met Office forecast the worst storm in years. How did the strongest gust (of 99mph measured on the Isle of Wight) compare with other storms?

Fraserburgh, Scotland, 1989 142mph
Rhoose, Glamorgan, 1989 124mph
Gwennap Head, Cornwall, 1979 118mph
Shoreham by Sea, 1987 115mph
Needles, Isle of Wight, 1998 115mph

Source: Met Office

Health and wealth

Jeremy Hunt criticised excessive salaries in the NHS. Which NHS staff have done the best over the past four years?

Average basic pay this year
Doctors £58,813
Nurses £30,619
Infrastructure support £27,565
Senior managers £75,759
% increase on 2009
Doctors 5.5%
Nurses 7.5%
Infrastructure support 10%
Senior managers 13%

Source: Health and Social Care Information Centre

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