Buses let-down

York Press: Buses let-down Buses let-down

THERE are times when you do something knowing deep down you may regret it.

The meal to celebrate my 70th birthday was such an occasion. We decided to heed the advice of Coun Dave Merrett and take the bus into town, rather than using the car.

Going into town was fine, but despite checking the timetable and being at the stop in Ousegate in good time for the return trip, the number 4 to Acomb, which we expected at 22.15pm did not appear. The rain was pouring and our enjoyment of a good night out was severely dampened. A bus finally arrived at 22.53pm and took us home: this was on February 6.

You would think we would have learned our lesson, but on March 20, we tried again using the bus into town. Same restaurant in High Ousegate, a lovely meal, bus timetable at the ready as we came to the end.

We were at the bus stop in Ousegate at 20.30pm: the electronic board told us a bus was due at 20.48pm.

At 20.50, the board changed, telling us No.4 was due at 21.18pm.The first one did not appear at 20.48pm.We finally boarded a No.12 and after a long detour and a walk we arrived home at 21.55pm– almost 90 minutes for a 15-minute journey.

I will not be using the bus on a night out again.

M Pickering, York.

Comments (9)

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1:19pm Tue 25 Mar 14

Teabag1 says...

That will teach you :-(
That will teach you :-( Teabag1
  • Score: 8

3:34pm Tue 25 Mar 14

sparkseffect says...

There is a simple rule to remember with the "next bus" information - if it says that a bus will arrive in so many minutes, that means that there really is a bus out there, equipped with a GPS location system, and it is being tracked. You will see the number of minutes reduce as the bus gets nearer. If, however, the display shows a time - say 22:15 - then you will have to guess whether the bus doesn't have a working location system or it isn't there because there isn't a driver for it. Still, it's better than the old days when nobody knew what was happening.
There is a simple rule to remember with the "next bus" information - if it says that a bus will arrive in so many minutes, that means that there really is a bus out there, equipped with a GPS location system, and it is being tracked. You will see the number of minutes reduce as the bus gets nearer. If, however, the display shows a time - say 22:15 - then you will have to guess whether the bus doesn't have a working location system or it isn't there because there isn't a driver for it. Still, it's better than the old days when nobody knew what was happening. sparkseffect
  • Score: -4

4:47pm Tue 25 Mar 14

Thecynic says...

Sorry that both your evenings were spoiled. But as a regular user of that particular service, (among others) I can assure you that it's the 'worst of the worst' for reliability and punctuality!
Unfortunately these issues do not just appear in the evening either,

I have traveled extensively across the UK and other European Countries, using local buses in both large and small cities and towns, and it's my experience that the public transport generally, in York is amongst the very bottom for both reliability and punctuality of any that I have used..

The route planners really ought to get a grip and try to give this City a better and more reliable service, a service that we all can be proud of.

I would recommend that next time, you use the car.
Sorry that both your evenings were spoiled. But as a regular user of that particular service, (among others) I can assure you that it's the 'worst of the worst' for reliability and punctuality! Unfortunately these issues do not just appear in the evening either, I have traveled extensively across the UK and other European Countries, using local buses in both large and small cities and towns, and it's my experience that the public transport generally, in York is amongst the very bottom for both reliability and punctuality of any that I have used.. The route planners really ought to get a grip and try to give this City a better and more reliable service, a service that we all can be proud of. I would recommend that next time, you use the car. Thecynic
  • Score: 14

5:22pm Tue 25 Mar 14

old_geezer says...

"The route planners"? Ever since deregulation in the 80s, all we've had (outside metropolitan areas) are weak "partnerships" co-ordinated by local councils with little power and less money. Buses are no longer run as public services, they are just profit-generators on wheels for shareholders.
"The route planners"? Ever since deregulation in the 80s, all we've had (outside metropolitan areas) are weak "partnerships" co-ordinated by local councils with little power and less money. Buses are no longer run as public services, they are just profit-generators on wheels for shareholders. old_geezer
  • Score: 9

3:30am Wed 26 Mar 14

Magicman! says...

Just a quick correction to the above comment, the 4 is in no way the "worst" for reliability and punctuality. In fact, First treat the 1,4 and 6 as their key routes outside of the Park and Ride network - with the 1 and 4 taking the most priority (and in just over 2 weeks time, some Hybrid double decker buses). The absolute worst route for reliability is the 5... by comparison, the number 4 runs with the punctuality of the Swiss railways!!

The electronic screens have two means of showing the departures... if it says for example: "4 Acomb - 5 Mins", then it means there IS a bus on the roads, with a GPS tracker fitted, and will be due in anywhere between 4-5 minutes... BUT if the screen says: "4 Acomb - 21:58" then it means the system cannot detect a GPS tracker device on the bus, and so is merely relaying the information to the timetable and doesn't mean there is even a bus at all. (the older Y reg and some of the "YJ51" reg buses in the First fleet don't have trackers fitted)
Just a quick correction to the above comment, the 4 is in no way the "worst" for reliability and punctuality. In fact, First treat the 1,4 and 6 as their key routes outside of the Park and Ride network - with the 1 and 4 taking the most priority (and in just over 2 weeks time, some Hybrid double decker buses). The absolute worst route for reliability is the 5... by comparison, the number 4 runs with the punctuality of the Swiss railways!! The electronic screens have two means of showing the departures... if it says for example: "4 Acomb - 5 Mins", then it means there IS a bus on the roads, with a GPS tracker fitted, and will be due in anywhere between 4-5 minutes... BUT if the screen says: "4 Acomb - 21:58" then it means the system cannot detect a GPS tracker device on the bus, and so is merely relaying the information to the timetable and doesn't mean there is even a bus at all. (the older Y reg and some of the "YJ51" reg buses in the First fleet don't have trackers fitted) Magicman!
  • Score: 3

9:29am Wed 26 Mar 14

SuperChris says...

The times you mention don't appear in the current timetable - so i'm guessing yours is out of date
The times you mention don't appear in the current timetable - so i'm guessing yours is out of date SuperChris
  • Score: -2

11:38am Wed 26 Mar 14

Fat Harry says...

I take the points made about the difference between the display modes on the electronic displays, but does anyone know why a bus displays as
3 mins, then 2 mins, then 3 mins, then 4 mins, then 3 mins and several more ups and downs until it eventually arrives? Is the bus driving in circles somewhere?
I take the points made about the difference between the display modes on the electronic displays, but does anyone know why a bus displays as 3 mins, then 2 mins, then 3 mins, then 4 mins, then 3 mins and several more ups and downs until it eventually arrives? Is the bus driving in circles somewhere? Fat Harry
  • Score: 1

1:41pm Wed 26 Mar 14

WhyEver says...

Fat Harry wrote:
I take the points made about the difference between the display modes on the electronic displays, but does anyone know why a bus displays as
3 mins, then 2 mins, then 3 mins, then 4 mins, then 3 mins and several more ups and downs until it eventually arrives? Is the bus driving in circles somewhere?
It's stuck in traffic, or at lights, or stopping to let people on or off. Have you ever been on a bus?
[quote][p][bold]Fat Harry[/bold] wrote: I take the points made about the difference between the display modes on the electronic displays, but does anyone know why a bus displays as 3 mins, then 2 mins, then 3 mins, then 4 mins, then 3 mins and several more ups and downs until it eventually arrives? Is the bus driving in circles somewhere?[/p][/quote]It's stuck in traffic, or at lights, or stopping to let people on or off. Have you ever been on a bus? WhyEver
  • Score: 0

4:37am Thu 27 Mar 14

Magicman! says...

Fat Harry wrote:
I take the points made about the difference between the display modes on the electronic displays, but does anyone know why a bus displays as
3 mins, then 2 mins, then 3 mins, then 4 mins, then 3 mins and several more ups and downs until it eventually arrives? Is the bus driving in circles somewhere?
Most likely that the time counts down because the computer system expects the bus to be at a certain point by then, but if the bus is held up in traffic then it doesn't pass that point until a bit later, at which point the time shown at the stop goes back up.
[quote][p][bold]Fat Harry[/bold] wrote: I take the points made about the difference between the display modes on the electronic displays, but does anyone know why a bus displays as 3 mins, then 2 mins, then 3 mins, then 4 mins, then 3 mins and several more ups and downs until it eventually arrives? Is the bus driving in circles somewhere?[/p][/quote]Most likely that the time counts down because the computer system expects the bus to be at a certain point by then, but if the bus is held up in traffic then it doesn't pass that point until a bit later, at which point the time shown at the stop goes back up. Magicman!
  • Score: 0

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