Saturday, April 14, 2007

Mystery of the missing pods

The Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh has a pneumatic tube system for the transportation of laboratory samples and pharmacy orders. These are encased in cylindrical pods which shuttle back and forth through the fabric of the building. Lately, staff have been noticing that the supply of these pods have dwindled. Where once there were a couple of spare pods on the rack, now they need to be borrowed from nearby wards, or failing that, requested from the labs or estates.
Recently, a number of pods were discovered on the roof of the hospital. No-one knows how they got there!
I have a theory.
Considering the number of cock-ups in the building of the hospital, I find it more than credible that a misreading of the architect's blueprints may have resulted in an egress of the tube system opening onto the roof. The missing pods being shunted down this false exit by a miskeying of the destination code, would result in them popping out the pipe and travelling in a parabolic arc over the hospital before landing where they were found. The opening might be some distance away, and thus remains undiscovered and purely conjectural at this stage. Any other theories would be appreciated.

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