A bunch of buses

First published in Letters

THE debate about “bus bunching” seems to have stimulated a few letters recently in The Press, the latest from Phil Shepherdson and Paul Hepworth. Mr Hepworth offers various reasons (Letters, December 28th) for the problem and a few solutions.

However, I wonder if the narrowing of the road on some bus routes has contributed to this problem. I refer to the ‘pushing’ out into the road various bus stops, the idea being to use the bus as a mobile road block to stop traffic overtaking it while passengers alight.

The one nearest me on my route into York is near The Fox on Holgate Road. When the bus stops so do all the cars, vans and other buses behind the bus, and the traffic lights are blocked. Maybe it’s time to get the traffic flowing again and pull the bus stops back into the original position.

Stuart Wilson, Vesper Drive, Acomb, York.

Comments (8)

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4:32pm Wed 2 Jan 13

strangebuttrue? says...

Nice thought Stuart but afraid there is more to come. I am told the next plan is to move another bus stop near the Fox to block traffic going out of York as well so you can look forward to more of the same.
Nice thought Stuart but afraid there is more to come. I am told the next plan is to move another bus stop near the Fox to block traffic going out of York as well so you can look forward to more of the same. strangebuttrue?
  • Score: 0

7:47pm Wed 2 Jan 13

pedalling paul says...

You may be referring to the raised boarding areas that have to be legally provided to comply with the Disability Discrimination Act. If you were a wheelchair user wishing to board, your perspective may be very different.

Or do you simply believe that buses are not part of "traffic" and that car users should continue to have priority over everyone else?
You may be referring to the raised boarding areas that have to be legally provided to comply with the Disability Discrimination Act. If you were a wheelchair user wishing to board, your perspective may be very different. Or do you simply believe that buses are not part of "traffic" and that car users should continue to have priority over everyone else? pedalling paul
  • Score: 0

9:20pm Wed 2 Jan 13

BioLogic says...

pedalling paul wrote:
You may be referring to the raised boarding areas that have to be legally provided to comply with the Disability Discrimination Act. If you were a wheelchair user wishing to board, your perspective may be very different.

Or do you simply believe that buses are not part of "traffic" and that car users should continue to have priority over everyone else?
Buses are part of "traffic" one of the worst parts. Buses will continue to be the cause of the congestion not the solution without a full system of dedicated bus lanes, for which there is not room on many of York's roads.

Public Transport, badly implemented, makes the problems worse not better and your blinkered approach does nothing to serve their cause. Woot joined up solutions, implemented in full they are nothing but a folly.
[quote][p][bold]pedalling paul [/bold] wrote: You may be referring to the raised boarding areas that have to be legally provided to comply with the Disability Discrimination Act. If you were a wheelchair user wishing to board, your perspective may be very different. Or do you simply believe that buses are not part of "traffic" and that car users should continue to have priority over everyone else?[/p][/quote]Buses are part of "traffic" one of the worst parts. Buses will continue to be the cause of the congestion not the solution without a full system of dedicated bus lanes, for which there is not room on many of York's roads. Public Transport, badly implemented, makes the problems worse not better and your blinkered approach does nothing to serve their cause. Woot joined up solutions, implemented in full they are nothing but a folly. BioLogic
  • Score: 0

12:03am Thu 3 Jan 13

strangebuttrue? says...

pedalling paul wrote:
You may be referring to the raised boarding areas that have to be legally provided to comply with the Disability Discrimination Act. If you were a wheelchair user wishing to board, your perspective may be very different.

Or do you simply believe that buses are not part of "traffic" and that car users should continue to have priority over everyone else?
I find it hard to believe that you would use the disabled as an excuse for the polluting congestion the council is creating in its quest to comply with the self created national and local co2 reduction targets. Can’t you just say it as it is?
There are no entry/exit points at the back of buses these days and this is mainly where the pavements are extended into the road at the stops so as to impede other road users, including cyclist, when a bus stops so don’t try shifting the blame on to a group of people who are less fortunate than yourself.
[quote][p][bold]pedalling paul [/bold] wrote: You may be referring to the raised boarding areas that have to be legally provided to comply with the Disability Discrimination Act. If you were a wheelchair user wishing to board, your perspective may be very different. Or do you simply believe that buses are not part of "traffic" and that car users should continue to have priority over everyone else?[/p][/quote]I find it hard to believe that you would use the disabled as an excuse for the polluting congestion the council is creating in its quest to comply with the self created national and local co2 reduction targets. Can’t you just say it as it is? There are no entry/exit points at the back of buses these days and this is mainly where the pavements are extended into the road at the stops so as to impede other road users, including cyclist, when a bus stops so don’t try shifting the blame on to a group of people who are less fortunate than yourself. strangebuttrue?
  • Score: 0

4:12am Thu 3 Jan 13

Magicman! says...

Well it is partly true. The Disability Discrimination Act means all companies must provide reasonable measures to allow disabled persons to use their services. For bigger companies this becomes mandatory sooner than it does for smaller ones - which is why bus companies like Stagecoach and First are ditching all their step-entrance buses like hot potatoes. Stagecoach Cumbria have withdrawn all their Leyland Olympians just a couple of months ago - these buses still have another 5-10 years service life left in them and provide a far superior ride to the plastic equivalents we call buses nowadays, but no ramp and no wheelchair space means no use to them.
When it comes to boarding points, bus stops have to be raised using Kassel Kerbs to about 30cm from the road surface, whilst modern buses can kneel to about 40cm from the road surface on average (Mercedes Citaro's can go lower, and the old Scania L113's that used to run the Park and Rides, the blue buses, did as well)... if a pavement is particularly narrow it can be considered a hazard to disabled people to raise the surface of the whole pavement at that point because of a bus stop, and so the bus stop is moved out so the pavement level can remain and only in the 'new' area is it raised to DfT standards. In addition to this, such build outs are often deployed in an effort to improve reliability of bus services, being built in hotspots where buses previously would be hemmed in by many selfish motorists passing the bus and not stopping to let it out because "I don't want to be stuck behind a bus" mentality would mean such people think their own singular journey is more important than that of the 30 people on the bus.

Don't like these build outs forcing you to stop? well maybe if you'd let buses pull out previously then the build out might not be there now, so some blame can be apportioned to anybody who has driven past a bus that you have seen is indicating to pull out long before you got to the bus.
Well it is partly true. The Disability Discrimination Act means all companies must provide reasonable measures to allow disabled persons to use their services. For bigger companies this becomes mandatory sooner than it does for smaller ones - which is why bus companies like Stagecoach and First are ditching all their step-entrance buses like hot potatoes. Stagecoach Cumbria have withdrawn all their Leyland Olympians just a couple of months ago - these buses still have another 5-10 years service life left in them and provide a far superior ride to the plastic equivalents we call buses nowadays, but no ramp and no wheelchair space means no use to them. When it comes to boarding points, bus stops have to be raised using Kassel Kerbs to about 30cm from the road surface, whilst modern buses can kneel to about 40cm from the road surface on average (Mercedes Citaro's can go lower, and the old Scania L113's that used to run the Park and Rides, the blue buses, did as well)... if a pavement is particularly narrow it can be considered a hazard to disabled people to raise the surface of the whole pavement at that point because of a bus stop, and so the bus stop is moved out so the pavement level can remain and only in the 'new' area is it raised to DfT standards. In addition to this, such build outs are often deployed in an effort to improve reliability of bus services, being built in hotspots where buses previously would be hemmed in by many selfish motorists passing the bus and not stopping to let it out because "I don't want to be stuck behind a bus" mentality would mean such people think their own singular journey is more important than that of the 30 people on the bus. Don't like these build outs forcing you to stop? well maybe if you'd let buses pull out previously then the build out might not be there now, so some blame can be apportioned to anybody who has driven past a bus that you have seen is indicating to pull out long before you got to the bus. Magicman!
  • Score: 0

10:07am Thu 3 Jan 13

strangebuttrue? says...

The fact is that the vast majority of people used to let buses pull out in the knowledge that you would not be stuck behind the eye stinging stinking mass for long as it would stop again in a few hundred meters and you would not be further delayed or poisoned. Once you are behind a bus now you are stuck, stop starting wasting time, money and polluting more so no wonder people take every opportunity to get past. The attitude you speak about, it seems, has been brought about by the policy of using buses as road blocks. This is same as some peoples attitude to cyclist where they are used to block traffic at most traffic lights.
I am very grateful to those who put up with bus and cycle journeys as it means I can get around more quickly. Indeed I used to cycle myself until someone decided to see if they could force me to cycle or get the bus since then I have exercised my freedom of choice and use the car.
The fact is that the vast majority of people used to let buses pull out in the knowledge that you would not be stuck behind the eye stinging stinking mass for long as it would stop again in a few hundred meters and you would not be further delayed or poisoned. Once you are behind a bus now you are stuck, stop starting wasting time, money and polluting more so no wonder people take every opportunity to get past. The attitude you speak about, it seems, has been brought about by the policy of using buses as road blocks. This is same as some peoples attitude to cyclist where they are used to block traffic at most traffic lights. I am very grateful to those who put up with bus and cycle journeys as it means I can get around more quickly. Indeed I used to cycle myself until someone decided to see if they could force me to cycle or get the bus since then I have exercised my freedom of choice and use the car. strangebuttrue?
  • Score: 0

11:11am Thu 3 Jan 13

yorkshirelad says...

Even though they have to stop frequently, buses are far far more efficient than having each of their passengers sitting alone in their own car. They therefore deserve to be given full priority.

Despite this a proper pre-paid ticketing system with automatic reader machines would reduce entry times considerably. But maybe this will only happen with re-regulation.

Much comment on buses is totally car-centric and completely misses the point that, actually, it is private cars, mostly with one person sitting in them, that are the impediment to the buses...not t'other way around.
Even though they have to stop frequently, buses are far far more efficient than having each of their passengers sitting alone in their own car. They therefore deserve to be given full priority. Despite this a proper pre-paid ticketing system with automatic reader machines would reduce entry times considerably. But maybe this will only happen with re-regulation. Much comment on buses is totally car-centric and completely misses the point that, actually, it is private cars, mostly with one person sitting in them, that are the impediment to the buses...not t'other way around. yorkshirelad
  • Score: 0

2:52am Fri 4 Jan 13

Magicman! says...

Precisely.... I just put a comment elsewhere and will put it here because I did the math... an Optare Solo minibus (these are the small blue buses Transdev use around Acomb) has a capacity of about 30 people. Peak time traffic queues consist mainly of single occupancy cars, so if every single occupancy car driver in a queue changed transport mode, that little blue bus would save 180m of road space, whilst itself only taking up the space of a van. 180 Meters in everyday terms is TEN BENDY BUSES put bumper to bumper.

As for dwell times at bus stops, the simple answer is conductors. You go anywhere with a tram system like Sheffield and they don't have people at the doors charging fares to passengers as they board, it is done once the vehicle os moving.
Precisely.... I just put a comment elsewhere and will put it here because I did the math... an Optare Solo minibus (these are the small blue buses Transdev use around Acomb) has a capacity of about 30 people. Peak time traffic queues consist mainly of single occupancy cars, so if every single occupancy car driver in a queue changed transport mode, that little blue bus would save 180m of road space, whilst itself only taking up the space of a van. 180 Meters in everyday terms is TEN BENDY BUSES put bumper to bumper. As for dwell times at bus stops, the simple answer is conductors. You go anywhere with a tram system like Sheffield and they don't have people at the doors charging fares to passengers as they board, it is done once the vehicle os moving. Magicman!
  • Score: 0

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