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Buses World News

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

30.9.07

AWARD * Canada - Bus drivers receive national accolades

B.C., Canada -MARKET NEWS/ The Salmon Arm Observer, by Richard MacKenzie -Sep 21 2007: -- # District #83 bus drivers (L to R) Barry Henry, Jesse Sexsmith, Frank Reynolds, Don Williams, Geri Olsen and Ralph Sundin join Transportation Operations Training Assistant Hetty Burt (third from right), in showing off the department’s recently earned Motor Passenger Council of Canada accreditation... District #83: Transportation excellence... School district #83 always knew they had one of the best transportation departments in the country, and now they have the documents to prove it...

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Recognition * USA - Los Al bus driver stays accident-free

Los Alamitos,CAL,USA –The Orange County Register (Costa Mesa,CA,USA), by SCOTT MARTINDALE -September 21, 2007: -- David Hepp, a 30-year OCTA employee, has never been in an accident... Hepp, who began his career atOrange County Transportation Authority -OCTA in 1977 and has never been in a bus-related accident, works out of OCTA's Garden Grove base... (COURTESY OF OCTA - ACCIDENT FREE: David Hepp has never been in an accident in his 30 years as a bus driver for the Orange County Transportation Authority )

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AWARD * UK - Bus service nominated for prestigious

Peterborough,UK -The Peterborough -22 Sept 2007: -- Years of hard work to improve bus services in Peterborough have been recognised with Peterborough City Council’s passenger transport team being nominated for a prestigious industry award at the UK Bus Awards 2007... It has been shortlisted for the BAA Heathrow Integration Award after achieving huge increases in bus usage in the city through partnership working with Stagecoach and the introduction of the Local Link service...

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* USA - Bus size an issue

New Milford,CT,USA -The New Milford Times, by Nancy Barnes -21 Sept 2007: -- The lack of a single director of operations within the New Milford school district has already caused disarray, with parents seeking solutions to what they have viewed as overcrowding, safety and lateness on school transportation-an area veteran administrator Thomas Corbett, the director of operations who resigned last week, used to oversee... Mr. Viglione, who, earlier in the day, said he had placed a number of calls to the school district concerning bus transportation since the school year had begun, reported that the overcrowding that had concerned him had stopped, with Mr. Mulvihill assuring him that the Long Mountain bus his young children ride would be held to its occupancy rate of 47 students...

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AWARD * USA - Dale County transportation department gets bus safety awards

Dothan,AL,USA -The Dothan Eagle, by Ebony Horton -Sep 21, 2007: -- Dale County Schools transportation director Lyvon Gilmore sleeps better at night knowing his guys are taking care of the hundreds of children bused to school each day, he told transportation employees earlier this week... But their hard work is not just recognized locally. The team was recently awarded the state Department of Education Safety Award for having a less than 10 percent deficiency rate on buses inspected by the state once a year...

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INFRASTRUCTURE * New Zealand - New bus exchange planned

A new $60 million Christchurch bus exchange close to the current site will be "future-proofed" for 30 years, says the Christchurch City Council

Waipara,New Zealand -The Press, by WARREN GAMBLE -22 September 2007: -- The council yesterday revealed the replacement site for the $20 million existing exchange – nearing capacity after only six years of operation... It will be 100m further west on Lichfield Street... Mayor Garry Moore said the popularity of the existing exchange caused congestion in the waiting lounges and in Lichfield Street... In the past six years Christchurch bus passenger trips had increased by 47 per cent to 19,000 daily and were projected to rise to 23,000 by 2010... (Picture by fishandchips: The Crossing - Home of the Bus Exchange)

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SURVEY * UK - Give us better buses, say youngsters

Youngsters are calling for transport to be made safer in Tendring.

Clacton,Essex,UK -The Clacton and Frinton Gazette, by James Dwan -22 Sept 2007: -- The call follows a survey that showed seven in ten children feel unsafe on buses and one in four fear for their safety... More than 650 children from schools and organisations gave details of their experiences of buses, trains, bicycles and taxis... The survey shows most youngsters say buses are too unreliable, drivers unhelpful and buses unclean... Stephen Mayzes, leader of Tendring youth council, said the council is aiming to work with bus operators and police... The council aims to tackle antisocial behaviour and to improve accessibility for young people with cheaper fares... 

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Law Violations * USA - Tots without car seats, drivers on cellphones

Stops find violations in school vans, buses

Boston,Mass,USA -The Boston Globe, by Michael Levenson -September 21, 2007: -- Boston police cited two school bus drivers with talking on cellphones while driving students yesterday and charged another with driving a day-care van overloaded with toddlers, six of whom were riding without car seats... Police and Registry officials handed out 155 citations yesterday, the most since 2003, during an annual crackdown dubbed Operation Guardian Angel, in which officials conduct surprise inspections of school buses and vans across the city... (Photo by George Rizer/ Globe Staff - Inspector Paul Harkins and Registrar of Motor Vehicles Anne L. Collins went over a van’s checklist yesterday during a random safety check of school buses and day-care vehicles)

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Tracking System * Canada - First Bus Considers For Buses

New technology may make iteasier for school bus companies to track their vehicles

Saskatoon,Saskatchewan,Canada -Saskatoon Home Page.ca, by Jim Mattern -21 September 2007: -- ... GPS tracking systems are being tested by First Bus Canada in various locations across the country, and could find their way to Saskatoon. First Bus Contract Manager Barbara Monette says if the right fit is found, a GPS tracking system could be implemented across the country... First Bus has a new telephone system operation following last January's snow storm. Monette says it allows parents and schools to call and get a message if there is an issue with buses...

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BUS MAKERS NEWS WORLDWIDE

* USA - Alcoa, Chinese firm partner on lighter, 'greener' buses

Pittsburgh,Penn,USA -The Centre Daily Times (Centre County,PA) -Sept 21, 2007: -- Alcoa Inc. and the Zhengzhou Yutong Bus Company Ltd. hope to have prototypes of the buses ready in time for the 2008 Summer Olympic Games... The first goal of the partnership is developing a new design that will make buses up to 20 percent lighter than current models... Yutong Bus is China's largest bus manufacturer and the second-largest in world. Alcoa is the biggest U.S. aluminum producer...(Yutong Bus Model: SC6821N)

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Deal * USA - For New AC Transit Buses Lacked Federal Approval

Berkeley,CA,USA -The Berkeley Daily Planet, by J. Douglas Allen-Taylor -21 Sept 2007: -- AC Transit officials have not released bottom-line figures on the complicated exchange of 16 North American Bus Institute buses for 16 buses made by Belgium-based Van Hool company because as late as Aug. 28 the district was still in negotiations over how much it owes the federal government for going through with the deal without federal approval... District trustees approved the exchange nearly six months ago on the claim by AC Transit General Manager Rick Fernandez that the deal was a “no brainer” that will “ultimately save [AC Transit] money”...
(Picture from wikipedia: GVU Bus)

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* Sri Lanka - 5300 buses for CTB

Geneva, Switzerland -Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka (Transport Minister Dullas Allahapperuma, Press release) -21 September 2007: -- Central Transport Board (CTB) currently operates with a capacity of only 4600 buses. This is a marked reduction from 5200 buses which were on service in 1975... The Government will be taking steps to increase the number of busses to 5300 in two months period... Minister Allahapperuma added that there is a visible sacristy of buses at every CTB bus depot and the Ministry is currently making efforts to find solutions to this problem through the ‘model depot’ project. He explained that there are many buses stationed at the depots because of mechanical problems...

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Protect Children * USA - On Buses, by Knowing the Laws

Illegal passing or making a right turn in front of a bus carries a $300 dollar fine, as does failure to stop for a bus with flashing lights on

Eau Claire,WI,USA -WEAU/TV 13 - Sep 21, 2007: -- With school back in and the busses back out, police are warning, if you don't follow the rules around school buses hefty fines will follow... Lt Karl Fisher says by law bus drivers aren't allowed to put on their flashing lights when stopped between sidewalks... Fisher says it's inattentive driving that causes most of bus related crashes and a growing number of those are the use of cell phones while driving...

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20.9.07

Crowded buses * USA - Have some fussing

Rise in gas prices one cause of higher ridership trend

Genesee County,MI,USA -MLive.com/The Flint Journal, by James L. Smith -September 13, 2007: -- Some local school districts are reporting more students are taking the bus, possibly because of higher gas prices. Some, such as North Branch, have increased bus driver hours despite having fewer students than last year... Matt Hess, North Branch's director of operations said, "When the gas prices go higher than $2.70 a gallon, more kids are on the bus"... What astounded her more was when she learned that the overcrowding and standing room is allowed by state law for the first few weeks of school. The law says districts can transport standing students through the fourth Friday of the year... (Photo from Buffalo Schools Supt.)

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* India - High Court Restrict speed of buses

Hyderabad,India -Times of India -14 Sep 2007: -- The AP High Court on Thursday directed the state government to restrict the speed limit of all school buses, maxi cabs and light commercial vehicles registered with it to 65 km per hour... The division Bench comprising Chief Justice G S Singhvi and justice C V Nagarjuna Reddy gave this order by setting aside an earlier judgement of its single judge. The Bench in its order, asked the government to implement this GO all over the state from January 1... (Picture by Spacing: Mumbai Buses)


* DTC to add 525 new buses to its fleet soon

New Delhi,India -The Hindu (Chennai,India) -14 Sept 2007: -- The Delhi Transport Corporation would be adding 500 low-floor buses and 25 air-conditioned buses to its fleet and in all a total of 4,500 new buses are proposed to be inducted, the Delhi Government’s Transport Department has said. ... Four-month temporary permits to be issued for STA buses... The existing stage carriage buses would be removed in a phased manner... Expansion of the fleet is at present under consideration of the Finance Department...

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Activists Criticize * Taiwan - Taipei mass transport policy

Environmental protection advocates criticized Taipei Mayor Hau Lung-bin for failing to enact an efficient and complete mass transport policy and for failing to curb the growth of private automobiles and motorcycles in the capital city

Taipei,Taiwan -CNA/Taiwan Headlines,By Elizabeth Hsu -13 Sept 2007: -- ... Over the past six years, more and more motor vehicles are on the roads in Taipei City, Peng said, adding that the number of licensed automobiles totalled 734,000 this year, while that of licensed motorcycles hit more than 1.05 million. The figures show an average growth of over 9,400 automobiles and more than 12,600 motorcycles per year in the city... Attributing the growth to failure to increase the usage rate of public transport, Peng said the rate is now at around 45 percent. He accused the Taipei city government of bragging about 32.6 percent annual growth in terms of the passenger load on the mass rapid transport (MRT) system, while being reluctant to mention an annual drop of 9.5 percent in the passenger load of public buses... (Photo: taiwan-guide.org - Mass Rapid Transit Taipei)

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Crime & Anti-social behaviour * Uk - On London's bus network

The London Assembly's Transport Committee is investigating crime and anti-social behaviour on the capital’s bus network

London,UK -The London Assembly website -September 13, 2007: -- ... The investigation will focus on: The measures put in place by Transport for London (TfL) to deal with crime and anti-social behaviour on buses and the extent to which they help passengers feel safe... Investigating what mix of measures – relating to staffing and technology – would improve the travelling environment... Crime and disorder on the capital’s buses has recently become a high profile issue, but it is a complex subject. By focussing on perceptions of safety and understanding what makes people feel safe, using available data and through wider consultation, the Transport Committee hopes to make recommendations to TfL and the Metropolitan Police Service that will improve Londoners’ bus journeys... (Picture from basildon.gov.uk)

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* New Zealand - Bus lanes give way to walkers

Proposed bus lanes on a busy strip of road have been refined following concerns about pedestrian safety

Auckland,New Zealand -The Auckland/stuff.co.nz, by JUSTINE GLUCINA -14 September 2007: -- Out of the 2000 brochures hand-delivered to properties along a 5km stretch on Remuera and St Johns roads, 100 replies were received during a five-week feedback period... Half opposed the bus lanes, 24 percent were in support and endorsed passenger transport as a viable alternative to the private car, while 26 percent were neutral...(Picture from showbus.co.uk: Howick & Eastern MAN 58 is seen in Auckland Bus Station in compnay with two Stagecoach Auckland MANs. )

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BUSES' PURCHASE PROSPECTS * UK - £70m pledge to boost buses

Stagecoach pledged to spend £70m on 400 new buses in Greater Manchester

Manchester,England,UK -The Manchester Evening News, by David Ottewell -13 Sept 2007: -- ... if the region's bid for £3bn of public transport cash is successful... Brian Souter, co-founder of the £1.5bn-a-year transport company, was in Manchester to announce an initial investment of £15m on a fleet of 100 new low-emission buses... Those new vehicles will go into service on key routes to and from the city centre over the next six months... But Mr Souter said his company were prepared to go much further if Greater Manchester's bid to the government's Transport Innovation Fund (TIF) was successful...(Picture, by MEN: Stagecoach co-founder Brian Souter)

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* Malaysia - Shuttle bus service rolls into record books

A Dedicated Transport System (DTS) – claimed to be the first in the world which utilises the Global Positioning System (GPS) and GPRS (General Packet Radio Service) to monitor passenger and bus movements in near real-time – has just been launched here

Cyberjaya,Malaysia -The Malaysia Star, by TAN KIT HOONG -September 13, 2007: -- ... It works by having a Mobile Tracking Unit (MTU) installed in each bus, containing a GPS chipset for location tracking and a GPRS telecommunications unit for sending location information to a web server... The MTU also doubles as a passenger tracking device because each DTS passenger is issued with an i-Button – an RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) chip – which relays information about each passenger to the system... This would allow companies in Cyberjaya to track and better manage their employees, it was announced... (Photo by mansionion: NadiPutra buses )

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TICKETING * USA - Cameras would take pictures of double-parkers who block Muni bus stops and routes

San Francisco,CAL,USA -San Francisco Sentinel -11 September 2007: -- ... Today, Assembly Bill 101 passed the State Senate and is making its way to the Governor’s desk which authorizes San Francisco to issue parking tickets to vehicles double-parked in designated transit-only lanes based on video evidence provided from forward facing parking cameras to be installed on San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency’s (SFMTA) buses... Newsom said cameras are another tool designed to improve the reliability and performance of Muni transit vehicles, which carry nearly 700,000 passengers each day, the second highest ridership in the state...

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Comment * Australia - Libs' bus backflip

"The facts of the matter are it is, today, impossible to deliver 120 buses in this coming year, and that's because of poor planning on the part of the previous Labor administrations."

Brisbane,Queensland,Australia -The Brisbane Times,by Daniel Sankey -September 12, 2007: -- That statement was made by Liberal councillor - and former public transport chair - Graham Quirk on June 4 this year in response to a plan put forward by Labor's Lord Mayoral candidate Greg Rowell... On a positive note - finally! - something is now being done to address the failures of Brisbane's bus system... Tomorrow, the council will approve a $20 million plan to put on the road 36 sweeper buses, which will pick up passengers left behind by buses on the city's 10 busiest routes during peak traffic times... (Photo by grantravel: Brisbane- Free bus)

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* China - School bus controversy

Compulsory safety standards for school buses that took effect nationwide late last week, has triggered controversy over its timing and the inconvenience the standards have caused for many students

Beijing,China -China Daily -12 Sept 2007: -- ... The standards are contained in a document on the safety standards for motor vehicles that were released by the State Standardization Administration. Having failed to meet the new safety specifications, 25,000 buses in Beijing stopped transporting students from Monday... The standards are indeed good as they require school buses not to allow students to stand in the passageways, there must be rails for seats along passageways, and every seat must have a safety belt. But they should have been gradually introduced so as to avoid causing chaos... The move immediately affected the children of migrant rural workers, about 1,000 are reported to have quit school. Their parents are anxiously looking for schools that can provide transport... (Photo from english.peopledaily.com.cn: A minibus lies in the frozen river after the unlicensed school bus plunged off a bridge and into a river in Shuangcheng, Heilongjiang Province )

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BUSMAKERS NEWS WORLDWIDE

* India - DaimlerChrysler luxury bus next year

Pune,India -The Wall Street Journal (NY,USA), by Sudha Menon -13 Sept 2007: -- Auto manufacturer DaimlerChrysler AG plans to venture into India’s fast growing bus business with a single model—an intercity coach, which will be priced competitively against the current leader in the luxury bus segment, Sweden’s Volvo Group, the second largest bus manufacturer in the world... DaimlerChrysler’s India managing director and chief executive officer Wilfried Aulbur said the company plans to roll out the bus on Indian roads between the first and second quarters of 2008... The Germany's truckmaker has a 70-year-old history in diesel cars, with more than 50% of its car sales globally in this segment... (Photo: Mercedes bus Citaro LE)

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Safety * USA - New regulations on school bus ones

Auto safety rules pledged

Washington,DC,USA -The Detroit News, by David Shepardson -September 20, 2007: -- The head of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration pledged action on a number of key auto safety and regulatory issues before the end of the year... NHTSA chief Nicole Nason pledged to introduce new regulations on school bus safety, and revisions to the government's New Car Assessment Program and its "ease of use" rating system for child safety seats... She also said a Bush administration working group is on pace to propose vehicle tailpipe emissions limits by the end of this year, with a final regulation in place by the end of 2008... In pledging quicker action, Nason noted the fast turnaround in getting new rules mandating electronic stability control, an anti-rollover technology... (US DOT's Photo: Nicole Nason)

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12.9.07

On the buses * UK - Two-week crackdown

London,UK -News Shopper -12 Sept 2007: -- ... The operation, named Goldfinger 2 has been launched to coincide with the start of the school term and will see officers from the Met's Transport Operational Command Unit (TOCU) on buses to reassure the public... Safer Neighbourhood Teams and Safer Transport Teams will also be deployed during daytime and early evenings across 20 boroughs, including Bromley, Bexley, Greenwich and Lewisham... Transport for London, who are funding the initiative, will also be providing Revenue Protection Officers to carry out static and mobile inspections to check for fare evasion and ensure passengers have paid the correct fare for their journey...

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* South Africa - MEC puts the brakes on bus drivers

As a result of drivers continuing to speed and drive recklessly, even the drivers of private vehicles were discouraged from using public transport

Cape Town,South Africa -Independent Online, by Sipokazi Maposa -11 Sept 2007: -- The behaviour of drivers of public transport vehicles, who are at the frontline as ambassadors to tourists visiting the city, is still a concern, says Transport and Public Works MEC Marius Fransman. The roles of these ambassadors were important in shaping the experiences of visitors... The introduction of the new 110 Man Explorer buses was a "step forward" in providing commuters with quality and efficient public transport... At least 260 000 people in the city used buses daily, Fransman said... The delivery of the buses had already started in some areas, and was set to be completed before the end of the year, with at least 150 more drivers set to be employed... (Photo from travel2capetown.com: Golden Arrow Bus Services)

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* UK - Buses to be re-routed "to ensure the safety of shoppers"

Liberal Democrats call for, in Newbury

Newbury,England,UK -The Newbury Weekly News Group -12 Sept 2007: -- More than a thousand people have backed a plan to remove buses from pedestrianised parts of Newbury. The Liberal Democrats say that it is only a matter of time before someone is hit by a bus in town, and want to see them re-routed away from Northbrook Street and through Park Way instead. However, their Conservative rivals say that driving buses through Park Way is not an option. Since buses returned to the road after a revamp last year, there have been reports of close shaves involving buses and pedestrians... Speaking at the meeting, Liberal Democrat leader Jeff Brooks said that if someone was knocked down tomorrow, buses would be withdrawn immediately... (Photo from oxford-chiltern-bus-page: Newbury buses service to Didcot )

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TRANSPORT INTELLIGENCE * Australia - Brisbane's bus squeeze remains

Brisbane,Queensland,Australia -The Brisbane Times, by Georgina Robinson -September 12, 2007: -- Every day last month, 28 buses were too crowded to pick up Brisbane commuters - and a proposal to put an extra 36 on the road by July next year will not ease the squeeze any time soon... Overcrowding on city buses stepped up a notch in August with 871 Brisbane City Council buses forced to drive past waiting passengers on busy routes... The figures came just days before public transport chair Victoria Newton presented Lord Mayor Campbell Newman with a $20 million plan to put 36 "sweeper buses" on the city's 10 busiest routes... The extra services would follow scheduled buses to pick up any passengers left behind... (Photo from juts.janes.com: Part of the Brisbane busway)

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Buses Maintenance * USA - Okayed by CMS fail state inspections

“Multiple safety issues” cited in reports – repairs at Orr Road are worst

Charlotte,NC,USA -WCNC, by JEFF SONIER -September 10, 2007: -- How safe are the buses that your kids are riding to and from school? That may depend on the mechanics who work on those buses... North Carolina law says every school bus has to be checked at least once every 30 days by local school system mechanics. But what if those mechanics don't find serious safety or mechanical problems? Or what if they don't fix what they do find?... The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction show that state school bus inspectors parking dozens of Charlotte Mecklenburg school buses that were found unsafe, or mechanically unfit – even after they were okayed by CMS mechanics... The inspection records for bus number 1065 illustrate the problem. CMS mechanics at Orr Road said the bus was fine. But that’s not what state inspectors reported. They parked number 1065 for what they called “multiple safety issues” – finding problems with the brakes, the exhaust system, the suspension, the backup lights, the brake lights and the front warning lights...

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11.9.07

BUSES PURCHASE PROSPECTS * USA - Schools officials not completely on board with plan to buy buses

Baltimore,USA -The Baltimore Sun -September 9, 2007: -- Howard County is considering the formation of its own mini-fleet of school buses... The buses would be used to fill in when private contractors have trouble providing all the buses needed each day to cover the system's routes... The plan is for the school system to purchase two buses and hire three drivers during the 2008-2009 school year... (Handout photo: Howard High School Principal Regina Massella said Howard the Lion, the school's sculpture, "is noble, and he serves as an inspiration for our athletes and staff)

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Women Quota in Buses * India - Himachal to enjoy 33% in

Shimla,Himachal,India -HimVani -10 Sept 2007: -- Himachal Pradesh government has given a new definition to women empowerment by reserving 33% seats in all government and private buses for the fair sex... The government has issued directions that violation of this order will be dealt with severely... All buses will now mandatorily have to specify in bold letters seats reserved for women... The transport department also plans to carry out surprise raids in buses to check any violation of the order...

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Fewer Buses * USA - Just when we need more

It's hard to say just how inadequate public transit is. After all, there's no statistic that measures how many people don't take a bus because they can't get to it, or because it doesn't run late enough for them to get home from work

Annapolis,MD,USA -The Annapolis Capital, by Eric Hartley -September 09, 2007: -- Only a few dozen people a day ride the city buses that run from Annapolis to Kent Island and south county... So the cancellation of the two routes at the end of this month might seem like a simple inconvenience for a few. But, in fact, it exacerbates a problem that's only going to get more acute... People who work odd hours for low pay - restaurant or retail workers, for example - are often the very ones who need public transportation the most. And they're the ones least helped by a system set up largely for commuters...

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Mass Transit * USA - Should be funding priority

Mass transit works

Woodbridge,VA,USA -Potomac News (subscription) -September 10, 2007: -- More than half of the commuters who drive toward the District of Columbia carpool, ride a bus or take the Metro... The region's bus and Metro systems are being utilized by more commuters than those who drive on highways in single-occupant vehicles, according to the Northern Virginia Transportation Commission... Commuting alone in a car isn't progressive anymore and it certainly isn't worth the time, money or pollution...

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Transport Mafia * Pakistan - Fleecing customers as authorities turn a blind eye

Transporters plying both air-conditioned and non-air-conditioned buses on the Karachi-Hyderabad route are overcharging commuters, especially on weekends, as the authorities continue to turn a blind eye to this issue

Karachi,Pakistan -The News -Sept 10, 2007: -- ... According to details, commuters traveling between Karachi and Hyderabad have to suffer undue financial burden, as transporters extort about 30 to 70 per cent extra fare from them... It is said that the concerned authorities in the transport department are well-aware of this issue, but they preferred not to intervene due to reasons best know to them...

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School Bus Crashes * USA - Accident Statistics

Tampa,FL,USA -InjuryBoard, by David P. Lowe -9 Set 2007: -- According to the Wisconsin Department of Transportation, which keeps bus accident statistics: In school bus crashes over the last couple of decades, fewer than 10% of school bus occupants have had any injury and 90% were not injured at all. The occupant most frequently injured is the bus driver since that seating position does not have the same passive occupant protections that passenger seats have, such as flexible and padded seat backs. The persons most likely to be injured in a school bus crash are drivers and passengers of vehicles that strike the bus or are struck by the bus. Sixty percent of school bus fatalities involve non-bus occupants. Small vehicles do not do well in a crash with a big yellow bus or any other big vehicle, and should be driven accordingly. The majority of school bus crashes are cited as the fault of the other vehicle's driver...

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BUS DRIVER STORY * USA - School bus drivers important part of school

Ellensburg,WA,USA -The Daily Record , by DON GRONNING -9 Set 2007: -- “Hi Pat,” says one youngster, clambering aboard the bus for the ride home from the second day of school... Pat is Pat Young of Ellensburg, and she has been driving a school bus for 30 years. She knows her passengers by name and greets her young rider... When asked if she ever transported the child of a former passenger, she said yes... “I’ve hauled them, then their child, then their grandchildren,” said Young, who has never had an accident in her 30 years of school bus driving. One of her more satisfying memories is of a student she didn’t get along with particularly well... “I hauled her for years, then she graduated and I forgot about her,” said Young... Then one day she stopped to pick up a rider and the mother came out to put her little girl on Young’s bus. The mother was the woman who Young thought didn’t like her...

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* UK - Pioneering bus scheme success

A new system to improve bus punctuality has been so successful that it is to be rolled out to other areas

Wigan,England,UK -The Wigan Observer, by Richard Bean -9 Sept 2007: -- ... The radical scheme, which has been pioneered in Wigan, aims to keep services to timetable by addressing the core issues for late running... And it has been such a resounding success on the busy streets of the borough that it is now being rolled out in Yorkshire, the Midlands and then nationwide...

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BUSMAKERS' NEWS WORLDWIDE

* India - Trucks and Buses coming up from Daimler Chrysler in
New Delhi,India -TechwHack, by Somanshu -9 Sept 2007: -- The Indian automotive market is all set to see luxury commercial vehicles from the stable of the company which current sell Mercedes Benz cars... DaimlerChrysler India is all set to start the manufacturing of their high-tonnage Actros trucks at its existing facility at Chikhali... They are also going to start manufacturing luxury buses starting next year at their upcoming plant in Pune...

* Japan - Isuzu Motor to produce midsize buses in India
Tokyo,Japan -Reuters/business daily Nikkei -Sep 9, 2007: -- Isuzu Motors Ltd will team up with Sumitomo Corp and Swaraj Mazda Ltd to become the first Japanese automaker to produce midsize buses in India later this month... Once the new plant starts to operate at full capacity, the company's two lines will be able to produce 40,000 to 50,000 vehicles annually and Isuzu aims to raise combined annual sales of trucks and buses to around 30,000 vehicles before 2015... Through remodelled products and entry into new segments such as small, light-weight trucks, Isuzu has said it would focus on big growth markets such as China, Russia and India...

* India - Toyota to foray into trucks, buses
Bangalore,India -Times of India, by Anshul Dhamija -10 Sep 2007: -- Following its success with premium cars and multi-utility vehicles in India, Toyota Motor Corporation is drawing up plans to enter the bus, truck and light commercial vehicle segments... The Japanese auto major is scouting for more land in the country and is said to be once again in talks with the Rajasthan government for setting up a manufacturing facility for commercial vehicles... Toyota manufactures trucks and buses under the Hino brand and light commercial vehicles under the Toyota brand... For the fiscal ended March 31, 2007, Hino recorded overall truck and bus sales of 52,684 units in Japan and 47,550 units in exports...

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8.9.07

PASSENGERS' TRANSPORT WORLDWIDE

* Thailand - Amazing Buses!

Bangkok,Thailand -The Nation, by Stephen Cleary -7 Sept 2007: -- Anyone who has spent much time in the Land of Smiles and especially the concrete jungle of the capital, will have been completely dumbfounded at some of the amazing public transport on offer. Let me start today with the meanest of the mean and that is the one and only non-air-conditioned Bangkok bus... Just how many times over the years have we heard some enlightened government official lecturing Bangkokians something along the lines of “Don’t take your car, take a bus!”. All very easier said than done, especially when the buses at peak hours are already more crammed with passengers than a rickety Indian train... Should the capital’s car riding population suddenly decide to adhere to this wordly government advice, then it is certainly advised that ladders be attached to the rear end of buses, so commuters will be able to climb up and sit on the roofs...


* USA - Rolls Out Eco-Friendly Bus Fleet

New York,NY,,USA -Cars & Transportation, by George Spyros -1 Sept 2007: -- All 162 school buses in Greece (That's the Greece Central School District in New York State) have been retrofitted with diesel oxidation catalysts and crankcase spiracle filters to reduce air pollution to which children are exposed. In the final installment of this Greek Trilogy, we just couldn't resist the punning. A project like this cost hundreds of thousands of dollars but the best part for the Greece Central School District and the taxpayers is that it was done at no cost to them. That's because this project was paid for by a grant from the EPA's Clean Bus USA Project...




* Turkey - Clean air campaign by Istanbul citizens

Istanbul,Turkey -azveoz.blogspot.com -7 Sept 2007: -- Istanbul citiziens make pressure to the municipalty to revise the buses to reduce exhaust emissions. Istanbul citizens send lots of e-mails and faxes to presidents to make use of LNG buses for more clean air. A blog http://azveoz.blogspot.com created and strated this campaing and advised everyone to send e-mails to the presidents... (Photo from azveoz.blogspot.com )


* UK - Public Transport Statistics Bulletin: Great Britain 2007 edition

London,UK -xpressdigest.org.uk -September 7, 2007: -- The Department for Transport has today published National Statistics on public transport in Public Transport Statistics Bulletin: Great Britain 2007 Edition... The key points are as follows: Passenger journeys on local buses in England rose by 4 per cent in the last year. Over the same period, passenger journeys on light rail systems in England increased by 9 per cent... Many of the other regions of England saw increases in the number of bus passenger journeys in the last year, as a result of the introduction of free concessionary bus fares for disabled and older (aged 60+) residents. The largest rise was for the East of England region which saw an 11 per increase in passenger journeys.-..

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Bus Rapid Transit * USA - Seeing red about Rapid buses in the Lone Star State

Los Angeles,CAL,USA -Metro Rider LA -7 Sewt 2007: -- Metro’s Rapid bus network has been the brigadier general in the public relations offensive for bus rapid transit... Bus rapid transit builds a rail transit system without even having to lay down track, and transit users cannot tell the difference... Metro succeeded admirably. It has built 6-lane guideways for buses, and the spare capacity can accommodate other vehicles! It has efficiently allocated the use of proof-of-fare machines by placing them on board the vehicles! The vehicles, indistinguishable from rail cars apart from the red livery, pimp-strut up to traffic lights and demand, “Where’s my green, bee-yotch?”... (Photo Credit: Cloverity via Flickr: A Capital Metro bus in downtown Austin, Texas)

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SAFETY * UK - Security officers to stay on the buses

Security officers will continue to patrol bus services and stations in Greater Manchester for at least another year following the success of a new safety initiative

Manchester,UK -GMPTE -7 September 2007: -- ... Greater Manchester Passenger Transport Authority and the Greater Manchester Bus Operators Association (GMBOA) have agreed to invest nearly £150,000 in the Patrol and Response Unit over the next twelve months... Uniformed officers work closely with the police to tackle crime and antisocial behaviour on the bus network, and responded to more than 260 incidents in their first nine months on patrol... Councillor Andrew Fender, Chair of the Passenger Transport Authority's Policy Committee, said: "The Patrol and Response officers have helped to reassure passengers that they can travel safely on the local bus network..." (Photo by P&R: Patrol and Response office with car)

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NEW "GREEN" BUSES * USA - Shore Transit gets three biodiesel buses


Salisbury,MD,USA -WMDT/AP -7 Set 2007: -- Shore Transit now has three environmentally friendly buses... The buses run on biodiesel fuel and will travel around the Salisbury area on transit routes 11, 21 and 22... Shore Transit says the new buses are safer and better for the environment. They're also bigger, and can hold more people...

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Bus Service * USA - Microsoft giving workers free ride -- with its own

Wi-Fi-enabled system will debut this month

Seattle,WASH,USA -The Seattle Post Intelligencer, by TODD BISHOP & ANDREA JAMES -7 Sept 2007: -- That's the surprise addition Microsoft Corp. made to its portfolio Thursday, announcing its own bus service -- complete with on-board wireless Internet access -- to shuttle its employees from their neighborhoods around the region to Redmond and back home again... The 14-bus Microsoft "Connector" system, to debut later this month, was announced as the company unveiled plans to open new offices in Seattle's South Lake Union and Pioneer Square neighborhoods... At launch, the bus system will handle no more than 1,000 employees a day. That's only a slice of Microsoft's more than 35,000 employees in the region... (Photo by Paul Joseph Brown / SPI - On Thursday, Microsoft announced it will begin bus service for its employees to and from Seattle neighborhoods and its campuses on the Eastside. Aaron Edwards, above, is general manager for MV Transportation, the company that will operate the 14 buses in the system)

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ACCIDENT * Nigeria - Buses collide head on, killing 33

Kano,Nigeria -Reuters -7 Sep 2007: -- Two buses collided in a head-on accident in northwest Nigeria on Friday, killing 33 passengers, road marshals said... One of the vehicles was trying to avoid an animal crossing the road when it smashed into another bus travelling in the opposition direction on the busy Gusau-Talata Mafara highway in Zamfara state, the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) said... "One of the vehicles caught fire immediately. Thirty-three people died in the accident, while nine others were injured," Zamfara FRSC commander Umar Liman told... Devastating road accidents are frequent in Nigeria, Africa's most populous country and top oil producer, where a crumbling road network, poorly maintained vehicles and dangerous driving combine to make the roads perilous...(Photo from NBC New2s (UK): Nigerian drivers are notorious for their aggressive style of driving)

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7.9.07

Survey * UK - Public Attitudes towards bus travel

Almost three-quarters of bus passengers are pleased with the service provided by their local buses, a Department for Transport survey into passenger experiences reveals today

London,UK -eGov monitor -6 September, 2007: -- ... The Public experiences of and attitudes towards bus travel report was commissioned by the Department to improve understanding of the opinions of both users and non-users of their local services... Passengers were found to be generally positive about their experiences, with the vast majority rating the services provided as either 'very' or 'fairly' good... Furthermore, most households could claim to live within a short walk of their nearest bus stop with a quarter of all adults using their local bus service at least once a week...

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New Buses * USA - Double-decker buses to hit Wisconsin roads

A low-cost bus service has bought a new fleet of double-decker buses that will soon be seen on Wisconsin's roads

Milwaukee,WEI,USA -The Business Journal of Milwaukee/Bizjournals.com (Charlotte,NC,USA) -September 6, 2007: -- ... Megabus a Chicago subsidiary of Paramus, N.J.-based Coach US, said Thursday that its daily express service will make its inaugural trip from Chicago to Minneapolis on Friday on its new double-decker bus, which will be the first in the United States, Megabus said. While the Megabus double-deckers will traverse Wisconsin, they are not currently scheduled to stop in the state... The company, which serves Milwaukee, said it purchased 17 wheelchair-accessible double-decker buses, each of which seats 79 passengers...

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New hybrid buses * Canada - Montreal gets green light

Montreal's first hybrid electric-diesel transit buses will hit the streets in early 2008 with the financial support of higher levels of government

Hamilton,Ontario,Canada -The Gazette/Canada.com, by LINDA GYULAI -6 Sept 2007: -- The Montreal Transit Corp.'s board of directors last night approved a financing deal with the federal and Quebec governments that will launch the project, to cost roughly $5.6 million... The province will foot half the cost of the eight hybrid buses that are to be road-tested throughout 2008, using some of the money it receives on Montreal's behalf from a cut of the federal gasoline tax...

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New Buses * UK - Safeway adds 10 new buses to fleet

Hudson,WI,USA -The Hudson Star Observer, by Margaret Ontl -September 06, 2007: -- Safety first is not just a slogan for Safeway Bus Co... Its fleet of 50 buses hit the road on Tuesday, the first day of school, for the Hudson district... New to the vehicles are security cameras on every bus...

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Park & Ride *- UK - Passengers Soar Past Million Mark

The soaring popularity of the region’s first purpose-built Park & Ride service has led to long range plans for a possible extension to the scheme

Durham,UK -Durham.gov.uk -September 5, 2007: -- Latest figures show the £10m service, launched by Durham County Council in Durham City in December 2005, has carried a total of 1.2 million passengers... And its increasing popularity shows no sign of stopping, with an average monthly increase in passenger levels of 33 per cent compared with last year... While there are no immediate plans to extend the Park and Ride scheme, additional Park and Ride sites are being considered in the Shincliffe and Stonebridge areas - along with a possible extension of the existing ones - as part of a range of options being assessed to improve traffic management in and around the City...

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Bus Safety * USA - Talk to kids about

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 24 million students nationwide start their school day with a trip on the school bus

Plattsburgh,NY,USA -The Plattsburgh Press Republican -6 Sept 2007: -- It's back to school again as summer vacations come to an end. With all of the excitement this time brings, bus safety may not be the first subject that springs to mind. We encourage parents to take time to talk with their children about safety... Although NHTSA reports that riding on a school bus is nearly eight times safer than riding in a passenger vehicle, an average of 11 school-aged pedestrians are killed by school transportation vehicles each year... Here are some tips for school-bus riders that parents should reinforce with their children:

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Unreliable Boards * UK - Concern over £2m bus project

A £2M scheme that has seen electronic information boards put up in bus stops across west and north Wiltshire is not working

Wiltshire,UK -The Wiltshire Times, by Charley Morgan -6 Sept 2007: -- ... The Real Time Bus Information system is designed to let people know exactly how long they will have to wait for their bus to arrive... But the times shown on the boards are often wrong and the system is proving unreliable... Wiltshire County Council bid for a £2m grant from the government to set up the scheme three years ago in an attempt to get more people in rural areas using public transport...

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PASSENGERS' TRANSPORT INDUSTRY * Australia

* Bus investment boosts Cabcharge profits
Sydney,Australia -Bus+Coach -31 August 2007: -- Expanding into bus fleets helped the taxi payment company Cabcharge Australia post a record annual profit... Cabcharge’s Executive Ehairman, Reg Kermode, says a key contributor to the result has been an investment in Westbus and other services in Sydney and the Hunter Valley region... The bottom line result jumped 36 percent to almost $52 million... Part of the profit is Cabcharge payment system is also more widely used than before...

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Hydrogen cell bus * Australia - Trials near completion in WA

Perth,WA,Australia -Australasian Bus and Coach -6 September 2007: -- Western Australia’s Planning and Infrastructure Minister, Alannah MacTiernan, says the operational phase of Perth’s hydrogen fuel cell bus trial will be completed as scheduled in early September... MacTiernan says the buses had prevented more than 300 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions since the trial started in 2004... "The three hydrogen fuel cell buses in the Transperth fleet, operated by Path Transit, have covered more than 260,000km and carried more than 330,000 passengers during that time," she says...

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Unruly students * New Zealand - Face buses ban

School students are being warned they could be kicked off Christchurch's buses for two years if they misbehave

Wellington,New Zealand -Stuff.co.nz/The Press, by ARWEN HANN -6 September 2007: -- ... Under the Trespass Act 1980, the city's bus companies have the power to issue trespass notices to anyone behaving badly and can ban them from using some or all buses, which are considered private property... (Picture by KIRK HARGREAVES/The Press - LONG WALK HOME: School students are being warned they could be kicked off Christchurch's buses for two years if they misbehave)

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BUSMAKERS' NEWS WORLDWIDE

* India - Ashok Leyland to start manufacturing buses by Feb. 2008
New Delhi,India -The Hindu -Sept. 5, 2007: -- Truck and heavy vehicle maker Ashok Leyland today said it will start manufacturing buses at its Dubai plant, which entails an initial investment of Rs 50 crore, by February next year... Ashok Leyland Managing Director R Sashasayee told reporters the plant has an initial production capacity of 2,000 buses and the company would subsequently increase it in terms of integration and number of units...

* DaimlerChrysler buses by early 2008
Taramani,Chennai,India -Sify, by Rabin Ghosh -5 September, 2007: -- DaimlerChrysler, the world's biggest commercial vehicle maker, said on Tuesday it will launch Mercedes-Benz buses in the country early next year.. The German auto giant is partnering Punjab-based bus body maker Sutlej Motors. The bus bodies will be built on Mercedes-Benz chassis manufactured by DaimlerChrysler India... The details of investment or range of buses to be launched weren't disclosed...

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