User-agent: Mediapartners-Google* Disallow: Buses World News

Buses World News

In brief: Worldwide montly news & informations about Buses, Busmakers, Passengers' and the Transport Industry


ELECTRIC BUSES trial runs in * Australia

* Queensland - Charging on with electric bus trial runs in Noosa 

-- Noosa Council will be asked at the next general meeting to support the calling and awarding of tenders this month to make way for a bus trial... A report to council said the electric bus lease agreement with Patico Automotive Pty Ltd was terminated in November due to the contractor being unable to meet the required delivery date... "The buses were manufactured in the UK however, following testing, delays occurred as a result of technical issues with the air-conditioning system," the report said... TransLink remains committed to the electric bus trial... The proposal to "test the market on a satellite depot operation, based either at the council depot or a suitable site elsewhere in the Noosa area" is subject to the support of bus company Sunbus... The one proviso for TransLink is that the trial does not result in higher costs to the state... 
(Photo: Electric buses will hit the streets of Noosa towards the end of this year, in a six month trial given the green light by the Noosa Council and TransLink) -- Noosa Heads, QLD, Australia - Noosa News - 1st Feb 2016

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* Uganda - SOLAR POWERED BUSES in trial on Kampala

* Kampala - Kiira Motors test drives 35-seater EV Kayoola electric bus

(Video by NTVUganda - Jan 31, 2016: Kiira Motors, the lone Ugandan car manufacturer has test driven their 35 seater bus named Kayoola. It is the first time the bus powered by batteries which lasted four years to make was unveiled. While the manufacturers are hopeful the automobile will later be produced for the market, they cite logistical and personnel challenges as major ones)
-- Kiira Motors, the lone Ugandan car manufacturer on Sunday morning has test driven their 35 seater bus named Kayoola. It is the first time the bus powered by batteries which lasted four years to make was unveiled. While the manufacturers are hopeful the automobile will later be produced for the market, they cite logistical and personnel challenges as major ones...



* West Bengala - Double deckers back in Kolkata?

-- The state transport department has begun negotiations with major automobile manufactures for reintroducing a fleet of double decker buses which were once the city’s pride... Calcutta State Transport Corporation officials said Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is keen on the “return of double decker buses’’. The buses will first ply in Salt Lake, Rajarhat and New Town where wide road space is available, while some of the new buses will be used for taking tourists around various landmarks in the city... 
(Photo: SNS - Double decker bus) -- Kolkata, W.B, India - The Statesman, by Aparajit Chakraborty - 2 February, 2016


APSRTC have no funds for 50 % as payment in advance for new buses * India

* Andhra Pradesh - Cash-starved RTC to opt for EMI route to buy new buses

-- APSRTC it is also trying to purchase buses on loan basis, the loan amount being repayable in easy Equated Monthly Instalment's (EMI) as it too is suffering from funds crunch... According to reliable sources, the APSRTC, having 12,000 buses across the state should replace 40 per cent of old buses with new ones. Though, the total requirement for new buses will stand at 5,000, the management decided to purchase 2,000 new buses in this year in addition to hiring 850 buses... However, as the corporation is not in a position to spend such huge amount, RTC officials are holding negotiations with the managements of the bus production companies and are proposing to take buses on the basis of EMI... It is learnt that the officials have moved the proposals to take buses under EMI with manufacturers like Ashok Leyland, Tata, Eicher, Volvo and Scania. While some companies did not agree to EMI payment, others asked the APSRTC to make at least 50 per cent of the payment in advance and the remaining in EMIs... But, the officials of the APSRTC, who are searching alternatives even for payment of wages to the staff, are expressing their unwillingness to 50 per cent upfront as they have no funds for making the payment... While, it would cost from `70 lakh to `One crore for purchasing air conditioned buses like Volvo and Scania, cost of the Super Luxury and Deluxe buses will be at `35 lakh and `32 lakh respectively... 
Guntur, AP, India - The New Indian Express, by S Viswanath - 31st January 2016




* London-style smart ticketing to be installed on buses across England
-- Electronic ticketing systems similar to those used in London are to be installed on buses across England under reforms to be introduced next month... The Buses Bill will give local authorities the power to demand that companies bidding for bus franchises implement smart ticketing systems similar to the Oyster cards and contactless bank card payments used in the capital. Councils will also be able to call for franchises to set up smartphone apps so commuters can track the whereabouts of their next bus... Integrated smart ticketing systems would mean that it becomes easier to buy return fares in areas using more than one bus operator. At present, passengers usually have to return with the same bus company or pay more for two separate one-way tickets... The five biggest bus operators, including Arriva and Go-Ahead, this month pledged to introduce contactless travel on all their buses by 2022, but smaller companies are thought to be resistant... 
(Photo from Getty - The Oyster card system, replacing cash payment, is to be duplicated across the UK)  --  London, EN, UK - Independent, by Mark Leftly - 23 January 2016


SAFETY SCHOOL BUSES * India - Parents expressed concern about

* Bhopal - Parents scared to send their kids on school buses

-- Several parents of schoolchildren in Bhopal have expressed concern over safety in school buses in the wake of serious crimes occurring on buses in recent times. HT spoke with two of the largest stakeholders in the situation - parents and school bus operators - to get a clearer picture of the implementation of guidelines that are supposed to keep kids safe. While most Bhopal school buses largely follow the guidelines laid by the Supreme Court, they have still not implemented Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) guidelines. Not equipping buses with CCTV cameras and GPS systems is among the rules that are widely flouted by school buses in the capital city... 
(Photo: Parents take away their children at a school-bus at Board-Office-Square in MP Nagar in Bhopal-Praveen)  --  Bhopal, Praveen, India - The Hindustan Times, by Purvi Jain - Jan 22, 2016


ELECTRIC BUSES * USA: Buyed by Chicago's CTA

* Illinois - CTA to buy electric buses

-- The CTA's bus fleet is about to get more high-tech. The agency will buy roughly two dozen fully electric buses... The CTA has been testing two models for the past year. Officials said that made the CTA the first major transit agency in the U.S. to incorporate all-electric buses into daily service on several routes across the city. The buses have traveled 25,000 miles so far and were able to go 80 miles on a single battery charge... Officials said riders will notice a much quieter ride. Electric buses also mean better air quality for everyone... The CTA plans to buy between 20 and 30 of the buses later this year, using federal grants...
(Photo: The CTAs bus fleet is about to get more high-tech. The agency will buy 20-30 fully electric buses) -- Chicago, ILL, USA - WLS/ABC 7 Chicago - January 22, 2016



* Pennsylvania - Crews working to free school buses from snowy grips

(Video by JK Hulon - Jan 28, 2014)

-- School districts around the region are trying to dig out from under all the snow... Said Mark Stein, chief facilities and operations officer for the Bethlehem Area School District in Northampton County, employees have been out cleaning since Sunday. The wind may have helped to clean the tops of the buses, but it also created snow drifts around the vehicles... Allentown School District opens parking lots Storm cleanup keeps parts of Northeast shut down Roof of zoo's birds exhibit collapses under snow Dump trucks hauling snow from West Reading Bethlehem closing streets this week to clear snow Pa. Turnpike apologizes for stranded motorists "We have to move the buses out, make sure they are cleaned off, then clear out behind the buses, then put the buses back" ... It's a step that needs to be completed 118 times... Now, it's just making sure the lot is cleaned so drivers can make it to their vehicles safely... Even though everything is cleaned up and it looks like the buses are ready to go in Easton, that doesn't mean there's school Tuesday, because it's a team effort and they have to work with the municipalities to make sure the roads are clear...
Northampton, PENN, USA - wfmz, by W Lewis - 25 Jan 2016

* Arkansas - Icy roads caused major delays for school buses across the Ozarks

-- Tuesday night’s icy roads caused major delays to school bus routes across the Ozarks. Because of the ice, some students didn't get home until late at night... Roads were so treacherous that many school bus drivers had to find a safe place to park and have parents come pick their kids up... Leaving bus drivers across the Ozarks on icy roads for long hours. Buses that could finish their routes had to wait in bumper-to-bumper traffic... The Nixa School District did review its response to Tuesday's winter weather. They plan to make some changes in the future...
The Orzaks, ARK, USA - kspr, by Jonathan Wahl - Jan 20, 2016

* Tennessee - Nashville MTA buses to operate on snow route detours

-- MTA officials announced early Monday morning that buses will operate on snow route detours... MTA sent a release to News 2 saying buses will operate all routes that have weekday service, even those without posted snow route detours... Bus officials say they worked all weekend with Metro Public Works and the Tennessee Department of Transportation to make sure the 40-foot buses can turn around safely... MTA officials could decide later in the day whether buses will remain on snow route detours or switch back to regular service...
(WKRN Photo) -- NASHVILLE, TENN, USA - WKRN - January 25, 2016 

* New York - Multiple school buses get stuck in the snow in Queens 

 -- Multiple school buses became stuck in the snow Monday as they tried to traverse snowy streets in Queens, the borough hardest hit by the weekend's blizzard... Residents were furious over unplowed streets and the mayor's move to keep schools open despite the record-breaking storm... PIX11 News viewers in Middle Village and Woodhaven reported seeing school buses getting bogged down in the slushy mess that still coated the roadways during the morning commute... Requests for comment from the city's Department of Education were not returned by the time of publication...
(Photo: New York City schools will be open Monday following weekend blizzard)   --  Woodhaven, Queens, NY, USA - Pix 11, by SAMANTHA TATA - JANUARY 25, 2016

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Tour Bus REGULATION in San Francisco * USA

* California - Tour bus bill would allow cities to conduct extra safety inspections

  (Video "San Francisco Tour Bus Lost Control/Crash", by Raw Leak)
 -- Responding to several recent tour bus collisions and crashes in San Francisco, San Francisco Assemblyman, today announced legislation that would allow the city to conduct its own safety inspections... The bill, would give cities with large tourism industries the option to develop their own inspection programs as a supplement to state inspections conducted by the California Highway Patrol and overseen by the California Public Utilities Commission... Currently, only around 30 percent of tour buses are inspected... In addition to the Union Square crash, tour buses have also been involved in the deaths of two pedestrians in recent years. Pieter Roell, 82, was struck and killed Saturday on Divisadero at Post Street, and city employee Priscila "Precy" Moreto was struck and killed at Polk and McAllister streets in October of 2014... 
 San Francisco, CAL, USA - KTVU -JAN 20 2016



* Maharashtra - RTO, cops to check illegal passenger transport

-- The state has decided to hold officials of the Maharashtra State Transport Corporation (MSRTC) and traffic police responsible for illegal transport of passengers... The regional transport offices (RTO) and police have been told to confiscate such vehicles, which include buses and jeeps. Officials may face stringent action if they fail to act against erring drivers, said a government notification... The High Court recently directed the state government to act against private transporters involved in stage transport of passengers. The court noted that illegal transport has been adversely affecting MSRTC's revenue. Stage transport by private operators is rampant across the state. Vehicles like buses, jeeps and six-seaters halt near MSRTC bus stands and pick up points, offering services at lower fares. Most vehicle owners do not have permits to carry additional passengers. Transporters are expected to provide point-to-point service, but they pick up passengers midway, which is unlawful. Only MSRTC is allowed to do so... 
(Photo: Pune India, Jeepney's passengers transport)   --   Pune, Maharashtra, India - TNN, by Sarang Dastane - Jan 20, 2016

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* South Carolina - Bill could pin bus passing on car owner

(Video: "2 cars pass a stopped school bus and Raleigh Police Department give chase!", by Craig Chandler - Nov 5, 2014

 -- You've seen the video, cars illegally passing a school bus as they pick-up and drop-off kids. New bus cameras have been able to catch a car's license plate, but many drivers got off scott-free because a bus driver or witness couldn't pick them out of a lineup... Now law makers are hoping to cut down on the growing problem by fining or jailing the owner of the car if a driver can not be identified...  While bus drivers see this bill as a victory, not everyone is happy... The bill must be passed by the House and signed by the Governor before it becomes the law... 
Charleston, SC, USA - WOWK TV, by Alyssa Meisner - Jan 27, 2016


MARCOPOLO BUSES * Brazil - Exported to Costa Rica

* São Paulo - 64 new, stylish Marcopolo Buses coming to Costa Rica

-- Marcopolo has just signed a new contract for the export of buses to some of the main transport operators in Costa Rica. The vehicles with different characteristics, will be used for urban, tourism and interstate transportation... The new buses are part of an ongoing renewal program of the Costa Rican companies... Marcopolo will deliver 38 road vehicle models Paradiso 1800 Double Decker (two floors), Paradiso 1050, Paradiso 1200 and Senior Viaggio 1050. For the urban segment the company will provide 26 units of the Torino bus model... 
Barrio Ipiranga, SP, Brazil - Marcopolo S.A. Press Release, by Jaime Lopez – January 27, 2016



* New York - Bus manufacturer says Plattsburgh Plant will close

-- A bus manufacturer in Plattsburgh has filed notice with the New York State Department of Labor that it will close its plant in April. As WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief ,Pat Bradley, reports, local officials hope the move is precautionary and needed contracts will be realized... Prevost is a manufacturer of upscale buses and high-end motor homes and specialty conversions. The manufacturing plant in Plattsburgh is located next to Nova Bus, which specializes in building transit buses. Both are owned by the Volvo Group, a global transportation manufacturer... The warn notice filed by Prevost Bus states that the company is closing its plant in the Town of Plattsburgh for economic reasons. Other than noting that 55 employees are affected, no other details are provided...
(Photo: Prevost buses) -- Plattsburgh, NY, USA - WAMC, by PAT BRADLEY - JAN 20, 2016


NEW ALL ELECTRIC BUS * USA - MAKERS: Motiv Power Systems & Creative Bus Sales

* California - Motiv Power Systems and Creative Bus Sales partner to build a Zero-Emission All-Electric school bus

-- Continuing to demonstrate its collaborative approach to greening America's fleets, Motiv Power Systems and Creative Bus Sales, Inc announced they will partner on a new all-electric school bus. Called the Starcraft e-Quest XL, the zero-emission school bus will use the Motiv All-Electric Powertrain, a Ford F59 chassis and Starcraft body. Features of the e-Quest XL bus include passenger capacity of up to 48, a range of up to 85 miles, 50 percent charge within 2 hours, among others... 
(Photo: New Zero-Emission e-Quest XL to be built on Ford F59 Chassis, using Starcraft bus body) -- FOSTER CITY, CAL, USA - PRNewswire - Jan. 20, 2016


* UK: ALEXANDER DENNIS denied Chinese deal

* Scotland - Busmaker denies Chinese deal

-- Falkirk-based busmaker Alexander Dennis has denied speculation that it is in talks over a sale of the business to China. On reports that the group which employs 2000 is likely to sell to Shanghai-listed Yutong, having rejected an offer from major Chinese customer BYD, a spokeswoman for the group said: “We are not indiscussions with any Chinese manufacturers at this point in time... “We remain committed to our long-term strategy and strengthening ADL’s position at the forefront of the bus industry in many global markets” ... (Photo: Alexander Dennis bus factory) -- Falkirk, Scotland, UK - The Herald Scotland - 25 January 2016


* Mozambique partnership with China to build buses

* China woos Mozambique partnership to manufacture buses

-- A high-powered Chinese delegation representing the Asian nation’s Ministry of Trade and the Xiamen Golden Dragon Bus Co. visited the Matchedje Motor car assembly plant in the industrial city of Machava, in Maputo Province to get acquainted with the unit, whose capacity could be enhanced to produce even more buses in the country...The project, Footprint to Africa learnt involves an increase in production to 100,000 vehicles per year by 2017, followed by new expansion phase to about 500,000 vehicles... The Matchedje Motor project, established just over four years ago, is the result of an investment by the China Tong Jian Investment Co. Ltd, and at this initial stage is operating with two assembly lines, a painting area and another area for inspections... 
Machava, Maputo Province, Mozambique - Footprint to Africa - January 20, 2016



* Tokyo - Review starts on bus regulations following deadly ski bus crash

-- In response to the deadly Jan. 15 crash of a ski tour bus in Nagano Prefecture, the national government has started a review of regulations for bus operators... The transport ministry has set up a panel to consider tightening the screening process for entering the business, toughening penalties for violations of relevant laws, and stepping up checks on drivers’ skills... The tour bus industry is booming amid an increase in the number of foreign visitors to Japan... The number of chartered bus operators doubled from the fiscal 1998 level to 4,512 in fiscal 2013, after the road transportation law was revised in 2000 to lower the hurdle for new entries... Bus manufacturers are enjoying a flood of orders. According to Hino Motors Ltd., sales of large tour buses jumped from 447 units in fiscal 2011 to 877 in fiscal 2014... The wait time for delivery is now over one year... The Tokyo-based bus operator ESP, whose vehicle was involved in the Jan. 15 accident in Karuizawa, Nagano Prefecture, that left 15 people dead, is a newcomer, obtaining permission for chartered bus operations in 2014... A transport ministry special inspection following the accident found that the firm had violated a number of rules, such as failing to ensure that its drivers had the required health checkups... 
(Photo: Japan ski tour bus in Nagano crash kills 14, injures 27 - A bus lies after it veered off to the opposite lane on a mountain road in Karuizawa, Nagano prefecture, central Japan Friday, Jan. 15, 2016) -- Tokyo, Japan - The Japan Times - JAN 25, 2016



Call him Mr. Big * USA - 3 city buses = 1 Dino

* New York - This newly discovered dinosaur is as long as 3 city buses

... Then again, it might just be Ms. — even the folks at the American Museum of Natural History aren’t sure. In fact, they have lots of questions about the titanosaur, whose fiberglass-cast skeleton was unveiled this week to the tune of the “2001: A Space Odyssey” theme... But one thing’s for sure: Measuring 122 feet long and 20 feet high, the as-yet-unnamed dino is the biggest thing in the place. It’s so large, its head and neck extend into the hallway outside its fourth-floor gallery... Its fossilized remains were discovered in 2014 in Argentina’s Patagonia region. Paleontologist Diego Pol, who received his Ph.D. at the museum, sent his mentor a photo of himself sprawled next to an 8-foot-long fossil... You can see the femur and a few other fossils at the museum before they tour the world. And the titanosaur? Happily, it’s here to stay... How long did it take to create that life-size cast?. The cast, based on 84 excavated fossil bones, was made in six months by a Canadian firm working closely with Argentina’s Museo Paleontológico Egidio Feruglio... 
(Image: This it's Mr. Big)   --  NY, USA - The NY Post, by Barbara Hoffman - January 16, 2016


SEX PEST BANNED of BUSES * UK: After molesting a schoolgirl on the top deck

* England - Sex pest Stefan Sabo banned from using buses during peak hours after molesting schoolgirl on top deck

-- The 30-year-old pervert told his victim: ‘I don’t care about the age difference’ and ‘I will do inappropriate things to you’... A sex pest has been slapped with a 10-year ban from using any bus during peak hours after molesting a schoolgirl on the top deck... Stefan Sabo will not be allowed to get on a bus between 7am and 9.30am and 3pm and 6pm until 2026... The 30-year-old sexually assaulted a 14-year-old girl on the No 11 bus as she made her way to school, the Birmingham Mail reports... At Birmingham crown court, Sabo, of Oxhill Road, Handsworth, pleaded guilty to sexual assault and was given an eight month jail term suspended for two years... He was also given the Sexual Harm Prevention Order banning him from buses... Jennifer Josephs, prosecuting, said the incident he was being sentenced for happened at 7.45am in May last year when the girl, wearing her school uniform, got onto the top deck of the bus... 
(Photo - Sex pest: The 30-year-old was banned from buses for 10 years)   --  London, EN, UK - The Mirror, by JANE TYLER - 18 JAN 2016


BUSMAKERS NEWS * China: King Long Buses

* Fujian - China considers partnership to manufacture buses

-- Representatives of China’s Ministry of Trade and the Xiamen Golden Dragon Bus Co. were in Maputo last week to analyse the possibility of setting up a partnership in public transport, according to Mozambican daily newspaper Notícias... On Friday, the members of the delegation visited the Matchedje Motor car assembly plant, in the town of Machava, Maputo province to get acquainted with the unit, whose capacity could be enhanced to produce even more buses in the country... Notícias also wrote that the Xiamen Golden Dragon Bus Co., a subsidiary of the King Long Group, one of the largest bus manufacturers in China, will focus the potential partnership in Mozambique on providing technical support to Matchedje Motor Ltd in the bus segment... 
Xiamen, Fujian, China - MacauHub - JANUARY 18TH, 2016

* Anhui - Ankai sold over 10,000 units buses in 2015

-- On January 5, Anhui Ankai Automobile Co., Ltd. released a report on its production and sales in December, 2015. According to the report, the bus maker sold 1,336 units buses, including 489 units large-sized buses, 212 units medium-sized buses, and 635 units light buses. In November, Ankai rolled out 1388 units various buses, including 602 units large-sized buses, 443 units medium-sized buses, and 343 units light buses... It is also revealed by the bus maker that its sales volume of buses for the whole year reached 10,017 units, down by 4.18% compared with its sales made in 2014. In 2015, Ankai sold 3.016 units large-sized buses, up by 9.13% year on year, 3,428 units medium-sized buses, down by 19.27%, and 3,573 units light buses, down by 3.6% year on year... In terms of production, Ankai rolled out 1,284 units buses in various sizes, including large-sized, medium-sized and light buses. From January to December, the bus maker's total production volume reached 10,080 units, down by 1.64% year on year. To be specific, the production volume of its large-sized buses went up by 15.28% year on year, that of its medium-sized buses dropped by 13.52% year on year, and that of its light buses dipped by 1.01% year on year... 
(Photo: Buses from Anhui Ankai Automobile Co., Ltd.) -- Hefei, Anhui, China - News - 16 Jan 07



* Arizona - Security glass tested on select Sun Tran buses

-- In an effort to protect its operators and improve customer safety, Sun Tran is equipping several of its 252 buses with security partitions... Similar to what’s seen inside some banks and convenience stores, the partition is a half-inch thick piece of plexiglass separating the driver from passengers... The goal is to eventually equip every Sun Tran bus with security partitions... But before that happens, operators will test various models over the next few months to see what works best for them and their passengers... Considering Sun Tran provides more than 20 million passenger trips per year, 13 reported assaults on Sun Tran buses last year is actually quite low... 
(Source: Tucson News Now - The goal is to eventually equip every Sun Tran bus with security partitions) -- Tucson, AZ, USA - Tucson News Now, by Som Lisaius - Jan 15, 2016


BUS DRIVERS SHORTAGE* USA: Assistants must have drivers' licenses

* North Carolina - Teaching assistants, others could be driving school buses under new policy

-- A shortage of bus drivers in the Alamance-Burlington School System could mean new school employees would be required to be licensed and ready to drive routes... A proposed policy before the Alamance-Burlington Board of Education would require new “classified” employees — cafeteria workers, custodians, teacher assistants and others, like graduation coaches — to get licensed and sign bus-driving agreements as a condition of employment... The district is short five full-time drivers, but the biggest worry is keeping a pool of substitute drivers to fill in on sick days, according to Assistant Superintendent Todd Thorpe. The school board raised bus-drivers’ wages to $11.60 per hour in the current budget to keep drivers in the district...
(Photo: Alamance-Burlington's school buses--  Alamance-Burlington, NC, USA - The Times-News, by Isaac Groves - Jan. 17, 2016


ALTERNATIVE FUELED BUSES * USA - Propane ones: * Help during harsh winter temperatures ** Save School District $300,000

* Iowa - New Propane-fueled school buses help during harsh winter temperatures

-- School districts in eastern Iowa are turning to a different fuel to power their school buses... The Cedar Rapids School District has purchased seven new propane buses to replace older diesel models... Linn-Mar, Anamosa, and Vinton-Shellsburg are a few other school districts with some propane buses... Propane is considered a greener alternative to diesel. It emits fewer greenhouse gases because it has a lower carbon content compared to diesel... Propane buses cost roughly $5,000 more than their diesel counterparts, but districts said they recoup the cost from lower propane prices... 
Cedar Rapids, IO, USA - KCRG-TV9, by Jill Kasparie - Jan 14, 2016

** Illinois - Propane fuels Olympia bus switch

-- Twelve new buses in Olympia School District’s fleet of 33 may not look different, but the engines under their hoods will save the district $300,000... The buses are fueled by propane, instead of the typical diesel fuel. Propane fuel is cleaner-burning and less expensive than diesel... Based in Stanford, the Olympia School District spans 377 square miles. Each school bus travels about 20,000 miles per year... Each bus is estimated to save the district $2,500 per year in fuel and maintenance. Over the course of 10 years — the life-expectancy for a bus — the district expects to save $300,000... 
(Photo: Propane power: Olympia expects big savings using alternative fuel)   --  Stanford, ILL, USA - Lee News Service/Heraald Review, by JULIA EVELSIZE - Jan 17, 2016

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REFUGEES BUSES * Germany: Angry local politician buses refugees to Merkel's Office

* Bavaria - Thirty-one refugees have been dispatched on the 7-hour trip

-- An irate local politician in Germany's southern state of Bavaria has dispatched a bus filled with dozens of refugees on a 7-hour journey to Chancellor Angela Merkel's office in Berlin as a protest against her open-door refugee policy... A spokesman for Peter Dreier from the southeastern town of Landshut confirmed to Reuters that 31 refugees were making the 550 kilometer trip to the capital and were likely arrive in the afternoon... A video on the online site of German newspaper Die Welt showed police officers shepherding dozens of men and women with bags onto a bus in a sunny country road lined with trees and chalets... Dreier appeared to be acting on a threat he made to Merkel last year. Critical of her mantra that Germany can cope with the influx of migrants, he reportedly issued a warning to the chancellor in a phone call in October... The frustration in Bavaria, the main entry point for most migrants coming to Germany, is especially strong with Merkel's conservative allies, the Christian Social Union (CSU), repeatedly calling on her to introduce a formal cap on migrant numbers. She has resisted such a cap, arguing that it would be impossible to enforce... 
(Photo Reuters: The refugees on board the bus looked anxious as they waited outside the chancellery building)   --   Berlin, Germany - Reuters/Huffington Post, by Madeline Chambers - 14 Jan 2016



* Tamil Nadu - Government buses: Driven to violating rules

-- There are no refresher or sensitising courses offered by the TNSTC to their drivers... They halt in the middle of the road, jump signals, drive rashly with blaring horns and think nothing of going the wrong way. Government buses are guilty of all of the above and behave like bullies, completely unmindful and indifferent to the smaller vehicles and pedestrians on the road... The reason is a combination of unskilled drivers, lack of will to enforce road rules by authorities and poor quality of Tamil Nadu State Transport Corporation (TNSTC) buses. Lives are claimed in accidents every year thanks to bad driving and many have been maimed. The only way to escape them is to give them a wide berth or get out of their way to avoid being hit..... According to him, RTO, police and TNSTC can initiate action against bus drivers for non-compliance to the road safety rules, but they do not as TNSTC is a government agency... 
(Photo: Thousands of commuters fined for violating pollution-reducing efforts)  --   Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India - The Hindu, by M.K. ANANTH - 18 Jan 2016



* Haryana - Online booking for ordinary H. Roadways buses

-- Haryana transport department has decided to start online ticket booking service for ordinary Haryana Roadways buses... State transport minister Krishan Lal Panwar said in the first phase of the scheme, 400 routes have been identified after conducting comprehensive study of various routes... “Passengers have to wait in long queues for getting tickets for travelling on these routes and reach the bus stand much before the scheduled timing of the buses,” Panwar said... The officers of the department were working for preparing software of online ticket booking and giving final touches to other necessary resources... 
(HT Photo - Haryana transport department has decided to start online ticket booking service for ordinary buses) -- Chandigarh, Haryana - The Hindustan Times - Jan 15, 2016



* Delhi - Why DTC needs to mind its BUSiness

-- First, the good news. The Delhi Transport Corporation is capable of running an efficient bus system... This was demonstrated this past fortnight during the odd-even experiment when the state-run bus company was able to respond to the increased ridership.. . Now, the not-so-good news. The fortnight-long exercise also proved that DTC cannot do without a boost for its fleet in the coming months... DTC bumped up its usual 86% operational efficiency to 95% in the fortnight since road rationing began on January 1. What this means is that more buses left the depots and completed more trips than earlier. The frequency of buses also went up because each bus made more trips. The number of daily trips increased from 37,237 to 44,597 during the fortnight, though this figure includes the trips made by 1,250 private buses inducted into service... Unfortunately, these achievements paradoxically validated the need for more buses on the ground. Currently, DTC runs the show with 4,461 buses, aided by 1,490 cluster buses operated by the Delhi Integrated Multi-modal Transit System (DIMTS). On any given day, however, at least 10% of them are unavailable due to maintenance and other issues... 
(Photo: DTC buses on depot)  --  New Delhi, India - The Times fo India, by Rumu Banerjee - Jan 15, 2016 

* Delhi government: To run 1,000 AC buses on PPP model. The government decided to opt for this model as DTC could not buy buses

-- The AAP government is aiming to augment public transport facilities before introducing the second phase of odd-even scheme... order to boost the city's public transport system, the Delhi government has decided to run 1,000 new air-conditioned low-foor buses on public-private partnership (PPP) model in the national capital... A proposal has been prepared by the transport department in this regard and it will be tabled in the Cabinet meeting later this month... The AAP government is aiming to augment public transport facilities before introducing the second phase of odd-even scheme which chief minister Arvind Kejriwal said will be back in an "improved form"... The government decided to opt for the PPP model as DTC could not buy buses despite floating tenders two-three times as bus manufacturers did not show interest due to some conditions in the tenders... 
(TOI photo, by Yogesh Kumar: The AAP government is aiming to augment public transport facilities) -- New Delhi, India - The Times of India - Jan 17, 2016

* Delhi - Breaking down the upkeep dilemma

-- With no manufacturer coming forward to sign a contract that stipulated it would also have to maintain the buses it sold to the Delhi Transport Corporation, the capital's bus agency decided last year to scrap the clause. Ironically, this was done at a time when maintenance of its buses has been one of the biggest concerns for DTC... Till two months ago, the rate of breakdowns was a scandalous 600 per day for a fleet of 4,500 buses. In the past month, the state bus agency has brought down the figure to around 300 per day... Clearly, the emphasis is now on regular maintenance and stricter supervision of the maintenance teams. The repair team, which is outsourced, has been a bone of contention for the DTC for several years. The annual maintenance contract, which was made a part of the tender in 2007 when a set of 650 buses was procured, was re-introduced in 2010 when DTC bought the bulk of its low-floor fleet. At the time, 3,775 buses had been procured in a contract that put the onus of maintaining the buses on the manufacturer for the life of the vehicle, which is around 12 years as per norm. As part of the AMC fee, DTC pays the bus companies Rs 3.5-12 per km, depending on the age of the bus... However, frequent breakdowns and penalties imposed by DTC had prompted manufacturers, especially major sellers Tata Motors and Ashok Leyland, to express reluctance at similar upkeep clauses in any new contracts. This forced DTC to jettison the contractual condition last year... 
(Photo: A DTC bus) -- New Delhi, India - The Times of India, by Rumu Banerjee - Jan 15, 2016

* Maharashtra - Home Department disallows private inter-city buses

-- The state move was in response to the Bombay High Court's directive, wherein the division bench of justices had asked the government to either come out with a policy in favour of privatisation or act against illegal private transport operators... Henceforth, travelling in a private inter-city bus might become next to impossible. The state home department on Thursday issued a government resolution (GR), disallowing private bus operators to provide inter-city bus services. These buses, reportedly, poach the Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) passengers... 
(Representational Image) -- Mumbai, Maharashtra, India - DNA, by ATEEQ SHAIKH - 18 Jan 2016



AIR POLLUTION * UK / Norway - Report: Diesel cars emit up to four times more toxic pollution than a bus

* England - Failure to use available technology to cut dangerous nitrogen oxides in new cars is a ‘disgrace’

-- A modern diesel car pumps out more toxic pollution than a bus or heavy truck, according to new data, a situation described as a “disgrace” by one Member European Parliament (MEP)... The revelation shows that effective technology to cut nitrogen oxides (NOx) pollution exists, but that car manufacturers are not implementing it in realistic driving conditions... Diesel cars tested in Norway produced quadruple the NOx emissions of large buses and lorries in city driving conditions, according to a report from the Norwegian Centre for Transport Research. A separate study for Transport for London showed that a small car in the “supermini” class emitted several times more NOx than most HGVs and the same amount as a 40-tonne vehicle... The issue of NOx pollution, thought to kill 23,500 people a year in the UK alone, gained prominence when VW diesels were discovered to be cheating official US emissions tests. The scandal also led to revelations that the diesels of many car manufacturers produce far more NOx on the road than in EU lab tests, though not via illegal means... The Transport for London research compared nine diesel cars, ranging from the super-mini class up to SUV, against three HGVs and one LGV. The NOx emitted from the cars was similar to that from the heavier trucks though one car – the smallest diesel tested – produced more than double the 12-tonne lorry and the same as the 40-tonne vehicle... Emissions expert James Tate, from the University of Leeds, said the reasons car manufacturers were not implementing the NOx reduction technology on cars were convenience and cost... 
 (Photograph: Mar Photographics/Alamy - Diesel cars tested in Norway produced quadruple the NOx emissions of large buses and lorries in city driving conditions)   --   London, EN, UK - The Guardian, by Damian Carrington - 22 October 2015


ELECTRIC BUSES * USA: On the University of Georgia Campus Transit

* Georgia - Campus Transit experiments with electric buses, hopes to increase sustainability

-- Students taking the East-West campus bus route Tuesday may have noticed an all-electric bus driving that route. The bus is on campus as part of a test for new electric buses for the University of Georgia Campus Transit, said Director Ron Hamlin... Hamlin said multiple electric vehicle manufacturers have brought their vehicles to campus, and this is the third bus that Campus Transit has tried out... He said Campus Transit, with the help of the Office of Sustainability, applied for a $10.5 million federal grant in June in order to fund investment in electric buses... Electric vehicles would require huge upfront costs, he said. But over the life of the vehicles, electric vehicles would cost less than the current diesel vehicles... 
(Photo by Brayden Robinson - UGA Buses: UGA Transit is looking into alternative forms of fuel for on-campus buses, but price and other complications may hinder them)   --  Athens, GA, USA - The Red & Black, by Nate Harris - Oct 23, 2015


BUSMAKERS NEWS WORLDWIDE * UK: JV amidst ADL and BYD -- ** Japan: Mitsubishi Fuso Bus'

* Scotland / UK - ADL seals £660m Chinese bus deal

-- Falkirk-based bus manufacturer Alexander Dennis Limited (ADL) is celebrating after securing a £660m contract with Chinese firm BYD... The deal will see ADL, one of the worlds largest bus manufacturers, build 200 single deck buses per annum, representing turnover of around £660m over the next 10 years... This would include the building of double deck buses, a sector in which ADL is a renowned world leader. If this happens, there is potential to triple the scale of the current deal to almost £2bn... ADL is the largest British-owned business in the UK automotive sector and in recent years has been one of the fastest-growing bus and coach manufacturers in the developed world... The group anticipates further growth of circa 20% with turnover moving towards £600m this year. It employs 2,500 people globally and supports a further 1,500 jobs through its global build partnerships... 
(Image: An ADL bus)   --  Falkirk, Scotland, UK -  BQ, by Bryce Wilcock -  21 Oct 2015

* Japan - Tour bus makers warily welcome gains

-- Manufacturers of large sightseeing buses are enjoying brisk sales as orders have increased from bus operators experiencing a surge in the number of foreign travelers as preparations continue for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics... Mitsubishi Fuso Bus and Truck Corp., a major manufacturer of commercial vehicles, will increase hiring next spring by 10 percent from a year earlier... The company’s Toyama plant is manufacturing at a high rate the Aero Queen, a sightseeing bus on sale since July, with another painting line added in August... Mitsubishi Fuso made the decision to expand its workforce, including hiring workers under fixed-term contracts, as the company received nearly double its usual volume of orders for large-size buses in the first half of the year, on a year-on-year basis. The number of orders it has received has exceeded its production capacity with current staffing levels, even if they were to work overtime and give up days off... Thus, the company reviewed its production plans and decided to increase by 20 percent its large and midsize bus production volume for 2016 compared to that for 2014... Besides the number of senior citizens who are fond of taking sightseeing trips by bus, there are an increasing number of foreign visitors to Japan. In some cases, bus operators have had to wait nearly a year for delivery of their vehicles ordered... 
(Photo: Mitsubishi Fuso, tourist bus Aero MM model)   --   Kawasaki-shi, Kanagawa, Japan - The Yomiuri Shimbun - October 22, 2015



PUBLIC TRANSPORT POLICIES * Europe: The European Standard for IT solutions

* Sweden - Nobina becomes strategic partner in implementation ones
-- Nobina who make public bus transport services in Sweden, Norway, Finland and Denmark, is the first operator to join as a strategic partner in the European ITxPT (Information Technology for Public Transport) Association to support the development and implementation of the future’s standardised IT solutions for public transport... The European Association that was initiated by the UITP (International Association for Public Transport) is a cooperation between bus manufacturers, PTAs, operators and IT companies. The objective is to introduce commonly accepted standards for a cost efficient and safe development of digital systems for public transport... With harmonisation of information systems via open IT architecture, it will become easier to create and further develop services. Commonly referred to as ‘plug and play’ integration of new applications and IT units facilitates on-board installation and maintenance. Operating costs are reduced by integrating multi-modular information systems, thereby facilitating improved planning of urban and regional transportation and optimising connections between all types of transport and parties involved. Additionally, they facilitate accident management by taking effective measures... 
(Photo: A Volvo 7700 bus, owned by the company Nobina, is here running Line 3 in Falköping -in Västergötland, Sweden-  for Västtrafik)   --  Stockholm, Sweden - Nobina AB/Business Wire - October 14, 2015