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busdriver1

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  1. There was at one time a saying: - Buses all screwed up round Meadowhall? UTC are on the job again. Dont forget that First used to have a man in there advising and while he was there things generally went reasonably well but when he went home and they used their own initiative things went bad, quickly. So it would appear its down to who is on duty and how they respond. Holding traffic with about 20 buses included just short of a junction for upwards of 30 minutes during the rush hour caused absolute chaos for many road users and bus passengers. Sadly this was at one time the norm but after several representations from bus companies there seemed to be an improvement.( maybe the offending controller got demoted to the planning department or similar). The point I am making, you, Planner 1 stated that UTC would ensure that no chaos would happen in the area of these works. My observation - based on fact and experience is that they can not be relied on and their performance depends on who is on duty so they can not be trusted to ensure that traffic does not grind to a halt as it surely will.
  2. I was party to the outcome through my work and my comments were based on the informed facts made available to me .There was a major missreading of the situation by UTC and this was later acknowledged. I am not in the habit of making unfounded allegations or fighting the corner of a body in which I may or may not have a vested interest.
  3. Urban traffic control ? The best source of man made congestion there is. I once sat on a bus for 35 minutes without moving on Meadowhall Way because ETC had taken over the lights and were prioritising flow from Meadowhall Road towards the motorway. There WAS traffic there but nowhere near as much as we were stuck in, so please dont tell us that they are the silver bullet. They are far from it.
  4. You tell the staff they have lost their weekend premiums then. Then run.
  5. Councils often specify that works are done outside the rush hour, allowing for clearing up and making the site safe it can come down to that.
  6. All about cost, the contractors will charge more for weekend work as they will have to pay premiums to staff.
  7. We have an unfortunate climate where we rarely get long term temperatures at a level where it freezes and stays frozen unlike colder countries. This means the ground and snow/ ice thaws then re-freezes so can be a repetitive issue. When we get a thaw, the salt etc gets flushed away. I believe that snow ploughs are ineffective at depths of less then 6 inches or something close to that
  8. The consultation I referred to was a genuine and open one. It was acted on to the requests of those concerned and the result was as I said. It is little wonder then that some are just run to tick the box as when done genuinely the result is often a disaster. Most bus companies do have staff that are very experienced and on some occasions listen to them and act on it. PTE's have staff who went to college to learn about planning bus services and did case studies in various areas then follow through trying to make a system that worked in Bognor Regis* work in Sheffield. On a few occasions these people have been on a bus, normally when at college though. * Random example
  9. On Oh so many occasions there have been consultations with the public over what they want. On a great many occasions tis was then provided only to be withdrawn a short while later because the public who said they wanted and needed the service did not materialise. One such example was when over 200 people signed a petition saying they wanted and would use a service from High Green to Rotherham. The service was provided and soon after withdrawn with average passenger loadings of 5 per day. Just one example of the gulf between what the passenger wants and what they will use. Any customer will claim they want this that and the other but they need to remember that a bus service ( Omnibus - for all) is not a personal taxi but a public service that is run reaching compromises. The bus companies pay large sums of money to the PTE in return for them disseminating information to the public and maintaining bus stops and shelters. Any comments or complaints about inadequate public information should be directed at them. I find it tiresome that the constant desire for cheaper bus fares and more frequent buses keeps coming up, often with suggestions that drivers should be paid more. The basic maths of that argument seems to get lost on the way. Both major operators in Sheffield are not making money as it is so how would massively increasing their costs improve things? Then we get people who want the council to take over. They have said they would do all of the above ( remember councils always carry out their promises) SO guess who is going to pay for it if that happens. US
  10. Thankyou for giving a good example of why bus driving jobs in Sheffield are hard to fill. I used to work in Rotherham many years ago and like the rest of my colleagues used to hate coming over to Sheffield. The attitude of many of the public there was disgraceful and we could not wait to get back to Rotherham where we were spoken to in a civil manner. I know this will rattle a few cages particularly amongst those who think butt kissing is part of a bus drivers role, but we never experienced this in Rotherham where we spoke to people in the same way ( politely) and saw no need for it in Sheffield. I felt so sorry for the poor souls that worked there all the time.
  11. The correspondence I have seen from an MD of a major operator predates that and clearly indicates that it is they who are wanting to reduce. I think we are are assuming the bus operators are not behaving responsibly here where the evidence is to the contrary No only on because it is done on the ticket machine there would be chaos of passengers tried to tap off on the ticket machine it may also record them as making a second journey as well as causing a log jam round the cab. The same system is in operation in Edinburgh
  12. It has to be a flat fare as there is no means of telling where passengers alight.
  13. Tap & go is being trialled in Doncaster where it seems to be fairly successful. There is a problem though. In order for it to work, there has to be a flat fare in operation and in doncaster that has been set at £2.00 . This means that several fares have been raised as there were a lot of fares below that level. The fact that most were above and have been reduced seems to have been overlooked by the complainers. The system "maxes out" at £4.70 the cost of a daily Doncaster ticket. The effect on daily company revenue is being monitored before a decision on trying it elsewhere is made. I suspect that it may not happen in Sheffield as the single flat fare would cause mass suicides in the population.
  14. The current reduction in services was not government lead as you implied though. It was very definitely operator lead, triggered by the arrival at a certain figure of reduced patronage. These reductions had to be sanctioned by the local authorities prior to implementation resulting in a staggered reduction as some areas were quicker to respond than others. South Yorkshire was one of the last to get the reduction.
  15. The "move from cash to cards" is often overplayed. Whilst there is a move, cash still had a major part to play. In Doncaster there is a form of capping but at the price of a standard flat fare for the area resulting in fare increases for shorter journeys. Oyster and all the myths surrounding it is not a great system. When it was being trialled, I was involved, and when reliability was dragged up to 75% tfl decided that was good enough. I am not aware of any increase in reliability.
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