User-agent: Mediapartners-Google* Disallow: Buses World News: April 2008

Buses World News

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


Indefinite Strike * India - Dooars mini-buses on

Siliguri,Bengali,India -The Statesman News Service --April 16, 2008: -- About 70 minibuses that ply on the various routes of the Dooars from Jalpaiguri went on an indefinite strike from today demanding action against the assailant who attacked two of their fellow workers... The strike has been called by the Citu affiliated North Bengal Bus and Transport Workers’ Union (NBBTWU) and is backed by the Dooars’ Minibus Association ~ a body of the owners. A Jalpaiguri based ambulance driver had allegedly roughed up the driver and conductor of a minibus near the Jalpaiguri Sadar Hospital on 12 April. The conductor of the minibus, Mr Chandan Chakroborty is still ad-mitted at the Sadar Hospital with injuries...


BUSMAKERS' NEWS * Sweden - Volvo Buses wins big order from FirstGroup

Stockholm,Sweden -Thomson Financial -16 April 2008: -- AB Volvo unit Volvo Buses said it has won 30 to 40 percent of an order worth 1.5 billion Swedish crowns, to deliver buses over the coming years to transport firm FirstGroup... The covers double-decker buses built on the Volvo B9TL chassis and 12-meter low-entry buses on the Volvo B7RLE chassis... Exact how many will be built on each chassis and where the buses will be placed in traffic will be announced by FirstGroup later, Volvo said, adding that production of the first buses is starting immediately...


Mass transport bus system * Thailand - A Summary Bus Guide to Bangkok’s

Bangkok,Thailand -Thai Mass Transport Systems -15 April 2008: -- This guide is only a summary of important and useful Bangkok bus services and information... While the bus system of Bangkok is cheap to use it is quite slow with average peak hour trips of 30 km taking around 2 hours to complete and off peak times of between 60 and 90 minutes to most areas even with the use of BTS and MRT. If using this information to travel to and from the airports or major bus terminals please allow at least 3 hours before flight check in time for travel at peak and 2 hours off peak... Note: Peak hour in Bangkok is 6am to 10am and 3pm to 8pm Monday to Friday. Also bus frequencies listed can often be reduced due to very heavy traffic. I.e. 2 or 3 buses come at same time... This next section is a list of useful bus routes to different major destinations in and around Bangkok...


BUSES PURCHASE * UK - Bus builder wins £125m contract

A Northern Ireland bus-builder has landed a £125m order with the UK bus operator FirstGroup

Ballymena, Antrim,N.Ireland,UK -BBC News -15 April 2008: -- Wrightbus said the order - understood to be for about 1,000 buses - is the largest in its history... FirstGroup currently operates a fleet of almost 9,000 buses in the UK carrying 3,000,000 passengers a day in more than 40 towns and cities... Wrightbus said it faced stiff competition to win the order... (Picture: The company is to build about 1,000 buses)


SAFETY * USA - Lynx installs tracking devices on buses

Orlando,FL,USA -The Orlando Business Journal -April 14, 2008: -- Lynx equipped all 290 fixed-route buses in the Central Florida Regional Transportation Authority system with automatic vehicle locator devices... The installation of the devices Sunday is the first step in establishing a communications network for the agency. The devices will allow supervisors to pinpoint any bus traveling in the system in real time, producing greater efficiency, safety and security, Lynx officials said... Further additions to the new communications network will include "next bus" notification electronic signs at major stops and the ability to offer passengers a real-time look at the location of buses on its Web site...


WiFi on Buses * USA - Twenty More Cities Now Offering

USA -geeksugar/Geek is chic -13 April 2008: -- USA Today is reporting that more than 20 cities are now offering WiFi on commuter buses including cities like San Francisco, Reno, Austin and Seattle... Although not all cities are eager to jump on-board, cities that have initiated the service are finding it well received by the public. Wiring each bus is said to cost about $1,000 to $2,000, which isn't too shabby considering how many commuters would utilize it... A majority of you said that you would love to have WiFi on public transportation, whether it be bus, planes or trains, so I'm sure you're super stoked about this news. Although in-flight calling ability on planes is a totally different story!... (Photo: Wifi on buses)


NEW SERVICES* Australia - Bendigo bus network boosted by 700 new services a week

Bendigo ,Victoria,Australia -Australasian Bus and Coach -11 April 2008: -- The Bendigo bus network has been increased by 30 percent offering 692 new services every week, including new routes and improved co-ordination with V/Line train services... Public Transport Minister Lynne Kosky says it is the biggest bus service improvement delivered to Greater Bendigo in 15 years... "There will be services at least every 30 minutes on prime routes and every hour on secondary routes," he says...



* Canada - TransLink to spend $150M on buses, SkyTrain by 2010

Toronto,Ontario,Canada April 11, 2008: -- TransLink plans to spend $150 million on more buses and SkyTrain cars over the next two years, of which $47 million will come from the British Columbia government... The money will buy 20 new electric trolleys, 11 articulated diesel buses to be used as spares, and 72 standard diesel-electric hybrids, the transportation authority announced Friday... TransLink said in a release it will also buy 14 more SkyTrain cars, which should be operational by February 2010. Translink says the purchases will augment the system's capacity by 11,000 people a day...

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DRIVERS' SHORTAGE * USA - School bus driver shortage pushing company administrators behind wheel

Waco,TX,USA -Waco Tribune Herald, by Wendy Gragg -April 11, 2008: -- Debra Baker spends most afternoons behind a desk, writing reports. But this week, a severe bus driver shortage has put her behind a steering wheel, driving a school bus every day... The bus service that ferries about 2,400 students to and from Waco schools every day is short 10 drivers. To keep the wheels on the buses going ’round, Student Transportation Specialist has put nearly all available staff members behind a wheel this week and has taken other measures, such as consolidating routes, said Baker, STS area director... She said if the shortage gets worse, her company can continue to consolidate routes, but she hopes that they will be able to get pay rates up next year and entice new drivers... STS in Waco is suffering from the same shortage that’s plaguing school districts and school bus services across the nation...


ALTERNATIVE FUELS * UK - Order of Complete Storage Systems for Hydrogen buses Bound for London, England

Calgary,Alberta,CAN -CNW -April 9, 2008: -- Dynetek Industries Ltd., a leader in developing, producing and marketing lightweight compressed gas storage cylinders, announced today it has received an order to deliver 10 hydrogen storage systems to ISE Corporation for the Hydrogen powered buses bound for London, England... These buses are part of the Mayor of London's plan to have up to 70 hydrogen vehicles in operation in London by 2010, as set out in the London Hydrogen Partnership's Transport Action Plan...


PASSENGERS * USA - As gas prices rise, buses seeing more traffic

The number of people riding buses is shooting up right along with gas prices

Wenatchee,WA.USA -The Wenatchee World Online World, by Jay Patrick -April 08, 2008: -- In the first three months of this year, 212,210 riders boarded Link Transit buses, nearly 18,000 more than January through March 2007. Ridership on routes connecting Wenatchee with outlying areas such as Leavenworth, Rock Island and Chelan have shown the most growth, said Eric West, Link's marketing manager... (Picture by Don Seabrook/World photo: Thomas Rutherford, 20, boards the Link Transit bus to his Plain home after attending classes at Wenatchee Valley College on Monday. He is riding the bus to save money on gas)



* South Africa - Bus supplier punts low-entry bus rapid-transport alternative

Garden View,South Africa -Creamer Media's Engineering News, by Irma Venter -11 Apr 08: -- Bus manufacturer MAN Truck & Bus South Africa will, in particular, target those cities aiming to introduce kerbside, low-entry bus rapid transport (BRT) systems ahead of the 2010 Soccer World Cup... MAN Truck & Bus, business development management board member Ray Karshagen says the company does not yet have a suitable high-floor bus available for those cities targeting BRT systems where passengers will enter and exit the buses from elevated platforms... (Picture by: IRMA - MANUFACTURING MILESTONE MAN in March produced its 2 500th bus at its Olifantsfontein plant)

* USA - Chinese Cos To Buy 207 Hybrid Power Systems For Buses

Cleveland,OH,USA -Dow Jones Newswires/CNNMoney, by Adam Edelman -April 9, 2008: -- Manufacturer Eaton Corp. (ETN) said China's Guangzhou Armada Development Corp. and Guangzhou Yiqi Bus Co Ltd. agreed to buy 207 diesel-electric hybrid power systems for new buses in the southern Chinese city of Guangzhou... The deal adds to the initial purchase of 30 Eaton hybrid-powered buses announced in January as part of the U.S. Commerce Department's Clean Energy trade mission to China... The buses will be put into passenger service throughout the year, Cleveland- based Eaton said...


Traffic Light Controller * USA - MAT buses try out new one

For the first time, it may actually save you time to drive behind a city bus

Fargo,ND,USA -WDAY TV, by Karena Lunday -April 09, 2008: -- ... Fargo is testing out a new system that allows MAT buses to keep traffic lights green longer... New emitters on top of 8 Fargo buses should help keep routes on schedule. They are being tested on busy route number eleven, which runs north and south on Broadway... If they have, Bommelman hopes to add emitters to more buses. Each emitter costs a thousand dollars. 80 percent of the cost was paid for with grant money...



* North Ireland / UK - Belfast could get bendy buses

Belfast,N.Ireland/UK -alaninbesfast -April 08, 2008: -- The Department for Regional Development & Efficient Movement of People has employed consultants Atkins & KPMG to investigate the possibilities for a rapid transit system in Belfast... The report has been published today and concludes that Belfast needs bendy buses rather than a light rail system... Setting up a light rail system (£590m) would cost four times as much as a bus-based system (£147m), and the annual operating costs for rail (£6.78m) would dwarf those for buses (£1.44m)... The report recommends that the running of the new public transport service should be put out to tender, though Translink would be free to apply. The pilot route proposals could later be augmented if the scheme proved successful... Regional Development Minister, Conor Murphy, was enthusiastic as he launched the report... (Video from YouTube, by stuartmoss -April 16, 2007: "Belfast - views from an open top bus tour". Features sites around the City Centre as well as the loyalist and nationalist areas of the city)


* Ireland - Why the Dublin Bus 141 route is needed

Irish Transport observed and explored

Dublin,Ireland -AllAboutBuses -8 April 2008: -- ... The Department of Transport have done the travelling public a great disservice by delaying the licencing of the the 141 route... As can be seen in this photo, after a 41 had been and gone, some passengers chose to remain for the next Swords Express service (nice bus stop branding, but very little on the bus itself to tell you who it is or where its going)... The travelling public are perfectly capable of making this kind of decision, and there is no reason why we could not have alternative services along all the main corridors, with normal stopping bus services, and higher-priced express services offering speed or extra comfort... There is nothing more pointless in transport terms than a QBC with too few buses, and an unserved demand. This just encourages motorists back into their cars... WAKE UP Department of Transport!


FREE PASS * UK - Wide bus pass starts today

From today around 11 million people across England have the opportunity to travel wherever they want for free on local buses as the new bus pass comes into effect

London,UK -PR/ (Canada) -8 April 2008: -- ... In the South East 1.77 million people are eligible to receive the new pass, of which 969,000 are current pass holders. The region will get an extra £25.14 million, an increase of 34% on what was spent in the last financial year and enough to pay for more than 25 million additional bus trips. The Department for Transport has also paid travel concession authorities in the region around £4.7 million for the cost of issuing new travel passes in the form of a smartcard... This expansion of the previous local scheme entitles anyone aged 60 or over, as well as eligible disabled people, to use their free bus pass across England during the off-peak period...


BUSES' PURCHASE PROSPECTS * Canada - ESN fundraising to buy new 24-passenger vans

Bathurst,NB,Canada -The Northern Light - April 8, 2008: -- Ecole Secondaire Nepisiguit has begun a fundraising project to help with extra curricular activities... The school is hoping to raise $300,000 for the purchase of three 24-passenger vehicles. Stephane Hachey, ESN vice-principal, said the vehicles are needed to take students to and from sporting and other school activities...


TECHNONEWS * India - Bus travel made easy in God`s own Country

Private bus operators in Kerala will provide instant information to passengers regarding the location of a bus, its timings, etc via SMS and the internet

New Delhi,India -The Business Standard, by Seema Sindhu -April 09, 2008: -- You are waiting at Edapally for the bus to Kochi, feeling restless about how long the bus will take to reach your stop. But now you can relax as just one SMS will solve your problem... Write the bus number along with the bus stop you are waiting at and you will get all the real-time information like where the bus is at the moment, its speed, and how long it will take to reach you, and more... FleeTrac is an integrated vehicle tracking system which will help display passenger information on multiple media, including SMS, using a centralised network operating centre. Besides basic information, web users will also be able to see Google maps to track their movement... (Video from YouTube,by jayaree -December 03, 2006: "India - Kerala / Sitting next to the bus driver", on the way from Kotayam to Chalakudy)


ASKING PASSENGERS * UK - Bus firm to get user feedback

First's Passengers are being asked to help drive changes to a bus network

Glasgow,Scotland,UK -The Glasgow Evening Times -8 April 2008: -- First is giving passengers the chance to have their say on improvements to the transport network - before bosses draw up their proposals... After the success of last year's pioneering Route Development Plan, First in Glasgow is this year asking customers to help formulate ideas by giving their thoughts ahead of a plan being drawn up... First is also taking ideas from its 2000 drivers and meetings are also planned with councils, health and education organisations and other groups with an interest in the public transport network... RDP 2007 saw the introduction of a series of initiatives, including a new direct bus service from Partick Interchange to Glasgow Airport, as well as improved services to major city health facilities, hospitals, colleges and tourist attractions... The firm is also spending £10million this year on new buses... (Video from YouTube, by DaveSpencer32 - October 16, 2007: "GVVT GLASGOW BUS RUNNING DAY OCTOBER 2007 " - PMP DVD 1560, The annual GVVT running day with free bus services)


Bus Services * Brunei - In KB And Seria Temporarily Halted

For nearly a week now, local private buses travelling to and from Kuala Belait and Seria have stopped operating, which has led to questions being asked by the public on the efficiency of public transportation in the country

Kuala Belait,Brunei -Bru Direct (Darussalam,Brunei)/Borneo Bulletin, by Liza Mohd -8 April 2008: -- ... A representative of the local private bus service operator, Berlima Sdn Bhd, said the local bus service operating between Kuala Belait and Seria has been temporarily halted as the company is waiting for road taxes for the buses to be renewed... According to the representative, the company's contract to provide transportation in the district ended on March 31. But the company received a call from the Land Transport Department on that date, informing them that their contract has been extended for an additional three months... Due to the short notice, the company was compelled to renew the road tax and insurance of its four buses to enable them to operate lawfully... Representatives from the Belait Land Transport Department were not available for comment... Passengers deprived of the daily local bus service and some have opted to take a ride from illegal taxi operators or ‘taxi sapu’, who have seized on the situation... (Video from YouTube, by ninohakim -August 11, 2007: "Brunei" , small part of Bandar Seri Begawan. There are much more beautiful areas of Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei Darussalam)


SECURITY * Israel - Bus services protest lack of guards

Jerusalem,Israel -The Jerusalem Post, by YAAKOV LAPPIN - Apr 8, 2008: -- All of Israel's private bus companies threatened on Monday to remove their fleets from central bus stations across the country if the government failed to reinstate a special public transport security service aimed at thwarting suicide bombings... The companies, which include well-known names such as Metropolin, Metrodan, Kavim, and Connex, said they would find alternative stations - less prone to terror attacks - after Pessah... Last December, the Finance Ministry decided to terminate the Public Transport Security Unit, which manned bus stops and stations as a final barrier between would-be suicide bombers and buses... (Photo: Ariel Jerozolimski - A security guard checking passengers going on a bus)



Hydrogen Buses * USA - Ford Delivers ones, to Detroit Metropolitan Airport

Detroit,Mich,USA -Transportation and Fuel Source -17 March 2008: -- Ford Motor Company and US Congressman John Dingell and the Wayne County Airport Authority today announced the delivery of two hydrogen-fueled Ford E-450 shuttle buses to be used for transporting airline passengers between terminals at Detroit Metropolitan Airport (DTW)... Today’s delivery is the result of a partnership involving Ford, the Wayne County Airport Authority and the Southeast Michigan Council of Governments (SEMCOG)...


* USA - Cedar Rapids Electric Buses Make Way to Scrap Yard

A failed Cedar Rapids transit experiment could find new life soon--either as spare parts and scrap or possibly in its original role as an electric bus

Cedar Rapids,IA,USA -KCRG, by Dave Franzman -Apr 7, 2008: -- ... C.J. Bacon and Sons, a salvage operation in Hopkinton, put in the winning bid for the mothballed buses... But while the new owner says his original plan was to just tear the buses apart for scrap and spare parts, he's now hearing from people who think some could run again as electric buses... Ten years ago when the experiment started, the plan to put electric buses on the streets of Cedar Rapids was big news... The idea was to see if such alternative-powered vehicles could operate successfully in a colder northern climate... But battery power and cold winters didn't mix and the buses wouldn't run far without conking out. The city parked the buses most of the time...


Train watchdog * UK - Will take buses on board

Passenger Focus to be given extra responsibility · Concerns over funding and fitness for purpose

London,UK -The Guardian, by Dan Milmo -April 8, 2008: -- The government is to create a super-watchdog for public transport by giving the role of bus passenger champion to Passenger Focus, the defender of rail commuters' rights... Passenger Focus will conduct research on bus services in England and report passengers' concerns to central government and local authorities. It publishes the influential national passenger survey, which has become a widely quoted barometer of farepayers' opinions on ticket prices and individual rail franchises... The transport secretary, Ruth Kelly, said buses needed a passenger representative because of their increasing popularity, accounting for two thirds of all public transport journeys and nearly 5bn passenger journeys a year...



* South Korea - Made-in-China Buses to Ply Korean Tourist Routes

Seoul,South Korea -Chosun -Apr. 8, 2008: -- Buses made in China will run in Korea for the first time. Big Motors, a Korean company producing exhaust emission reduction devices, said Monday that it will import the Starliner, a bus designed by Germany’s Neoplan and assembled in China, for tourist purposes... The Starliner is Neoplan’s popular model and assembled by China’s Zhejiang Jinhua. It costs W242 million (US$1=W975), some W40-50 million more than Hyundai Motor’s luxury tourist bus Universe...


School Bus Systems * Canada - Catholics starting separate one

Canmore,Alberta,Canada -Rocky Mountain Outlook, by Tanya Foubert -Apr 06 2008: -- Canmore students spread across three school districts will no longer be taking the bus together in September when the Catholic school board begins its own busing system... The move to put a second bus route throughout the community is to reduce the ride time students would experience being transported to the new Catholic school in Three Sisters, according to Christ the Redeemer School Division deputy superintendent Michael O'Brien... (Photo : Catholics starting separate bus system)


'Leasing' * Malaysia - Penang State Government Rejects This System For Buses

Adopted by certain bus operators in the state

Penang,Malaysia -Bernama -April 6,2008: -- Because of problems caused to competitors and the public, said a state government official... Chow Kon Yeow, Chairman of the Penang Local Government, Traffic Management and Environment Committee, said if they persisted on using the system, the state government would not hesitate to urge the Commercial Vehicle Licencing Board (CVLB) to take stern action against them... Under the "leasing" system, a bus company would lease buses to certain bus drivers who would then be responsible for the upkeep of the vehicles, including fuel cost... Chow said besides from failing to adhere the operating schedules, these bus operators had also broken several CVLB rules... Rapid Penang Sdn Bhd (RapidPenang) recently claimed that its drivers had been threatened and harassed by "leasing" system drivers...


More Buses * Laos - For Pi Mai Lao

Bus Station will add more bus route on schedule service for the upcoming Pi Mai Lao or lunar New Year which falls mid-April

Luang Prabang,Laos -Laos Traveller.blogspot, by Phanomsinh--April 7, 2008: -- ... “The bus ticket would remain the same price to cope with the increase of passengers who plan to visit their families in northern and southern provinces,” confirmed a senior official of Northern Bus Station... The plan was discussed at the meeting on 3 April, was organised by the Public Work and Transport Department in collaboration with the Northern Bus Station and private-run bus service for north and south parts...


Innovation Award * UK - For Transport for London’s iBus

London,UK -7 Apr 2008: -- The Intelligent Transport Society (ITS) for the United Kingdom has presented London Buses with the 2007/08 Annual Award for Excellence for its iBus system... iBus is helping London Buses deliver reliable, consistent bus services while providing audio and visual information to passengers on board... The Annual Award for Excellence is presented to the organisation that has done the most to further the development or deployment of a transport solution or innovation using Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS)...


Double-decker * UAE - Buses to hit Dubai roads

Dubai,UAE -Arabian Business, by Amy Glass -7 April 2008: -- Double-decker buses will hit the streets of Dubai next month, as the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) continues its campaign to discourage motorists from using their cars... The RTA is stepping up its efforts to fight Dubai’s crippling congestion problems, with the authority to spend one billion dirhams this year on 626 new buses for the emirate... (Picture: Getty Images - BUS BOOST: Double-decker buses will hit the streets of Dubai next month, as the RTA continues its campaign to discourage motorists from using their cars)


Free Bus * UK - Youngsters' travel proposal

A proposal to give schoolchildren free bus passes is being considered in South Yorkshire

Weybridge,South Yorkshire,UK -Environmental Transport Association -7 April 2008: -- Supporters of the idea feel that it would get more youngsters onto public transport and free up some of the private traffic on the ‘school run’. It is also hoped youngsters will become accustomed to using public transport and continue the habit into their adult life, reports the Yorkshire Post... The paper said the scheme was one of several being considered by Passenger Transport Authorities across the country... The news comes as the South Yorkshire Public Transport Executive (SYPTE) seeks full government funding for three public transport developments – two new bus routes and a ticketing system – which are expected to cost £74 million in total...




* South Korea - Hyundai develops mild hybrid bus

Seoul,S.K. -Autobloggreen, by Domenick Yoney -Apr 7, 2008: -- South Korean car manufacturer, Hyundai, has announced they are entering the hybrid bus business. They are approaching this market niche from a slightly different angle by beginning with a more affordable mild hybrid architecture... Incorporating an 8Kw electric motor, this system is centered around stop-and-go. When the bus comes to a stop, so does the engine and when the foot comes off the brake the engine is spun back up to speed. Other hybrid tricks include regenerative braking and an electric fan for engine cooling. Because it is so simple the company hopes to offer both a diesel and CNG version and estimates the final cost to its customers to be about a fifth of a full hybrid design. The first dozen should be delivered by the end of this month for real-world testing and the plan is to begin mass production by the end of 2009...


Passengers Win * UK - Fight for bus service

Wolverhampton,England,UK -Express and Star -5 April 2008: -- Passengers have won a battle to get back a bus service which was rerouted away from their homes. Elderly and disabled bus passengers had been forced to take taxis... The bus route through Willenhall and Walsall was diverted and nearly 400 people signed a petition and launched a six-month campaign after being left “abandoned”... The 333 bus service redirected, missing out some Bentley residential streets... But transport chiefs are now set to return the route back to its original format, to the delight of passengers...


Bus Journey Costs * UK - £123 per passenger

A subsidy of £123 is being paid for every passenger on a new bus service – a three-mile journey which costs just £6 in taxi, it emerged yesterday

Newport,Wales,UK -ic Wales/Western Mail, by Rhodri Clark -Apr 5 2008: -- ... The “rail linc” bus between Rogerstone and Newport railway stations was launched on the same day in February as the train service between Ebbw Vale and Cardiff... The Western Mail warned at the time that the bus was unattractive because of its average speed of less than 4mph between Newport and Rogerstone. Two months later, officials have now admitted that just six passengers per day on average are using the bus – which makes 26 trips per day... But the Welsh Assembly Government is providing £224,500 a year in subsidy, via Newport Council, for the service. Allowing for Sundays and bank holidays, when the bus does not operate, that equates to a subsidy of £122.68 per passenger... One Newport taxi company quoted a one-way fare of £6 for the same journey yesterday...



* Cameras for Vermilion Parish School Buses

Lafayette,LA,USA -KATC -5 April 2008: -- Vermilion Parish students who act up on the school bus, could soon be caught on camera... The school board has voted to put digital video cameras on all full-size Parish school buses. The cameras cost about $1300 a piece. Outfitting all the buses will cost about $78,000... School officials say, ten buses are already outfitted with cameras. They say, they've helped solve a few small discipline issues...

* Video Cameras More Popular on School Buses

La Crosse,WI,USA -WKBT, by Bart Winkler -April 4, 2008: -- Video cameras in school buses are becoming more and more common, as school districts are installing them as an added safety measure... West Salem district officials have decided to phase in more video cameras on their buses in addition to the ones they already have... The video cameras aren't being installed in response to students behavior, but rather to make buses as safe as possible...



CONTROLS * USA - School to target drivers who pass stopped buses

Syracuse,NY,USA -The Post-Standard/, by Pedro Ramirez III -April 03, 2008: -- The Syracuse school district beginning Monday will pilot the nation's first monitoring system aimed at catching drivers who illegally pass stopped school buses... A city-owned school bus fitted with a mobile license plate reader will make regular morning and afternoon school bus routes. The routes will change every week to help monitor different neighborhoods through the end of the school year, officials said... The new equipment was announced Wednesday. About 50,000 drivers across the state pass stopped school buses each day, according to state statistics. How does system work?...


Data * New Zealand - Shows Wellington’s buses are 99.7 per cent reliable

But can it possibly be true? Happily, better monitoring is on the way

Wellington,New Zealand -Poneke's Weblog -April 4, 2008: -- ... Really? That’s what the official statistics from Greater Wellington Regional Council claim... Only 0.3 per cent of Go Wellington’s buses failed to meet reliability targets in January, the most recent figure available, according to data provided by Greater Wellington public transport divisional manager Wayne Hastie... That amounts to a minuscule 126 trips out of the 42,000 that operate each month on the Go Wellington network (formerly Stagecoach)... While that looks like a good result for what is a quiet month, the figures for most of 2007 were much the same...


PASSENGERS PROTEST * USA - New Yorkers Protest ICE Raids on Trains and Buses

New York,NY,USA -El Diario-La Prensa, by Lorenzo Morales/New California Media (San Francisco,CA) -Apr 03, 2008: -- Dozens of demonstrators gathered at the entrance to the New York Penn Station bus terminal in Manhattan Wednesday to protest against raids that immigration agents are conducting on public buses and interstate trains... The demonstrators accused the government of allowing Amtrak trains and Greyhound buses to operate without advance warning to passengers that raids may occur... Protesters demanded that the companies alert their passengers about possible immigration inspections and reimburse the costs of tickets to families who have been affected by these measures. Dustin Clark, spokesperson for Greyhound, says that the company has no obligation to inform passengers about inspections...


BRT * Nigeria - The Lagos Bus Rapid Transport scheme

Lagos,Nigeria -The Financial Standard -3 April 2008: -- The take-off of the long-awaited Lagos State Government Bus Rapid Transport (BRT) scheme on March 17, 2008 after months of preparations and delays due to logistic hiccups provides a soothing relief to commuters and motorists in the state... The scheme has indeed brought some sanity to the chaotic traffic situation of Lagos State which has made driving in the state an agonising experience... Before the BRT scheme, commuters and vehicle owners in Lagos have had to spend hours on the road to get to their destinations because of the penchant of commercial vehicle drivers to park on the expressway to pick passengers... The reckless parking on the highways and other unauthorised places by commercial drivers to pick passengers has been identified as a major contributor to traffic congestions on major roads in the metropolis...


BUSES WORLDWIDE * Rep. of Maldives Islands - MAT Buses At Male’ International Airport

Maldives -Kishore's Blog -April 2, 2008: -- Mat or Maldivian Air Taxi is a seaplane operator in Maldives and I use this service very often to travel to different resorts in Maldives. MAT has a counter at the Male’ International Airport where you can check-in and you get your boarding pass. The MAT airport is bit away from the Male’ International Airport but in the same Island... Once you check-in you are taken to a bus which you can see in the picture, and the luggage is taken in a separate van to the airport where there is an excellent lounge...


CONTROLS * Philippines - MMDA to Control Buses Along EDSA Via Radio

Manila,Philippines -Technograph -3 April 2008: -- Anyone who lives in Metro Manila knows just how many buses pass through EDSA, the main thoroughfare of the metropolis. So many in fact that they’ve proven quite a challenge for the MMDA, the urban authority tasked with, among other things, managing the vehicular traffic of the Philippine capital... The problem is that many of these buses operate along EDSA without permits, adding to the traffic problem. And as Paetechie reports, the MMDA has resorted to drastic measures to punish violators. But the agency is now experimenting with technology: ...


PUBLIC TRANSPORT SYSTEMS * Australia - Priority to trams and buses

Melbourne,Australia -The Melbourne Herald Sun, by Geraldine Mitchell -April 03, 2008: -- The State Government could face a council backlash if a plan for more clearways goes ahead... Sir Rod Eddington yesterday called on the State Government to use a "more forceful approach" to give trams and buses priority in the inner city... He said fast, frequent, reliable and comfortable bus and tram services were critical to increasing patronage... Sir Rod also called for rapid, high quality bus services to Doncaster. He said research found the best way to improve public transport services along the Doncaster corridor was by buses. But any service must have the same frequency and hours of operation as trams and trains, he said... It would cost up to $300 million and the new service could be introduced as early as next year, he said...


New Buses Fleet * UK - They are picture perfect

Key Yorkshire landmarks are being carried on a bus company's new double-deckers

Yorkshire,UK -The Telegraph & Argus, by Will Kilner -2 April 2008: -- First's new £3 million fleet was unveiled in Centenary Square, Bradford, yesterday... A total of 21 new vehicles have been emblazoned with pictures of landmarks, including Bradford's Alhambra Theatre and Wool Exchange... The buses will serve routes between Bradford, Leeds and Huddersfield from this week... The vehicles include the latest in Euro IV engines - tuned and designed to reduce emissions... (Picture: First's new double deckers are readied for the public)


TECHNONEWS * India - State buses to go hi-tech

If you are a daily commuter in Kerala buses, then get ready for a new passenger information service provided in over 20,000 private buses operating in the state

Kochi,Kerala,India -News from Kerala, by praveennair -2 April 2008: -- ... This modern transport system is said to benefit travellers by providing them with instant information on location, arrival and departure timings of these buses on their finger tip... It was informed that a Chennai based technology company ‘Dhanus’ has come up with this proposal which will be a landmark in the field of state transportation system. It will be the first of its kind initiative of connecting all buses with this new communication mode. In this initiative the consortium partners are the Chennai based Sobha Applied DSP Pvt Lmt, along with Kochi based Kiran technologies. As per this new system commuters can assess all the information of these buses via internet and through SMS...


COMPLAINS * Australia - Here's why we're missing the bus

Herded like cattle ... packed in like sardines ... perhaps the new saying should be squashed like inner-westies on a bus?

Cumberland,Australia -The Glebe (Sydney,AUST) -2 April, 2008: -- ... Hundreds of commuters from suburbs like Marrickville, Newtown and Camperdown battle every day to catch buses into the city and back home again at night... They can only watch helplessly, with mounting anger and exasperation, as yet another full bus sails past... Half an hour later, many are still standing at bus stops, cursing the State Government and its exhortations to catch public transport... The stress is affecting bus drivers too... Rail Tram and Bus Union president Raul Baonza said buses to and from Newtown attracted the most complaints from drivers who had to face frustrated passengers... Passenger numbers were up 1.4 per cent at peak times along the Parramatta Rd corridor in the year to February 2008 105,000 more passengers over the morning and afternoon peaks... A State Transport Authority spokesman said extra buses had been put on at busy times and this was monitored...


Free Bus Travel * UK - Council services threatened by

Free off-peak bus travel for the over-60s in England has begun

London,UK-The Telegraph, by David Millward -3 April 2008: -- ... The scheme will enable 11 million people over 60, and the disabled, to take a bus anywhere in England after 9.30am on weekdays and all day at weekends and bank holidays... When the Government ann­ounced the national scheme, it promised an additional £212 million in grants to pay for it... But some councils said the extra money would not cover the cost... A Department for Transport spokesman said: "We are confident that the money we have given has been generous... "We have given 30 per cent extra in grants to local authorities, with the money being weighted to help coastal towns where demand will be greater."...

* Why bus fares need to fall for all

London,UK -The Guardian -April 2, 2008: -- The best thing about the free bus pass for over 60s is that it could create a brand new lobby group for buses. Let's hope the greys get organised, says Cat Hobbs from the Campaign for Better Transport... Perhaps the best thing about the free bus pass is that it could create a brand new campaign group for buses. Some 11 million people will benefit if the bus network is good, and 11 milllion people will moan if it's not. Rising bus industry costs mean bus cuts as well as rising fares, and over 60s won't like that. Many of them, like Hilary, will have time on their hands to travel on buses and fight for better ones. Let's hope the grey lobby gets organised...



BUSES' COSTS * USA - To fill up 75 lusd buses every day: $4,000

Price of gas hitting local schools hard

Lodi,CA,USA -The Lodi News-Sentinel, by Amanda Dyer -April 1, 2008: -- If you think the soaring price of gas is hitting your pocketbook hard, take a look at your local school district... Lodi Unified School District spends $4,000 a day filling up its 75 diesel buses... At the beginning of the school year in September, said Carlos Garcia, director of transportation at Lodi Unified, the school district spent $2.40 a gallon filling its tanks with diesel. That number is up to $3.51 now... Lodi Unified gets a lower, fleet price for diesel buses... (Photo by Brian Feulner/News-SentinelSusan Leonardini fills up her bus with diesel fuel Monday at the Lodi Unified School District bus garage. Leonardini has been driving buses at LUSD for 21 years)


BUSMAKERS' NEWS WORLDWIDE * Brazil - VW Lorries and Buses reaches 300,000 vehicles produced

Volkswagen announced today (28) that its lorry and bus division, based in the city of Resende, in the state of Rio de Janeiro, has reached the figure of 300,000 vehicles produced since its inauguration, in November 1996...

São Paulo,Brazuk -ANBA -31 March 2008: -- The factory based in Rio de Janeiro reached the figure after selling almost 38,000 lorries to Bertin Group... A spokesperson for Volkswagen informed that 47,000 vehicles were sold last year, including lorries and buses, being 11,000 exported. Apart from Brazil, the brand also sells to 31 countries, including Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, Algeria, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates... The main importers, however, are Argentina, Chile, Uruguay, Bolivia, Colombia, Venezuela, Paraguay, Ecuador, the Dominican Republic, Peru, Ivory Coast, Nigeria and Saudi Arabia...


Bus Cameras * USA & Canada - To eye bus passengers

* Surveillance system protects riders, drivers, Saskatoon Transit says

Hamilton,Ontario,Canada -The Star Phoenix/, by Danielle Mario -March 31, 2008: -- The success of a bus video surveillance pilot project means cameras could be a feature on all new buses... In the summer of 2006, a program began involving the installation of video cameras at the front and rear of city transit buses, as well as a digital sound and recording system... In a report going to city hall today, Saskatoon Transit says it plans to make the camera systems standard for all new buses... The move is a result of positive feedback from transit operators, heralding the system for providing a sense of security for drivers, for footage to aid investigators of bus crimes and for a reduction in vandalism. There was no negative feedback from transit passengers... The new system will feature an additional camera, filming the passengers as they enter the bus, in addition to the two cameras filming the aisles as people come and go from their seats... (Photograph by : Greg Pender, The StarPhoenix - Saskatoon Transit wants surveillance cameras, like the one at the front of this bus, to be standard equipment on all new buses )

* Cameras catch the action on Gaston County School buses

Gastonia,NC,USA -The Gaston Gazette, by Amanda Millard -March 31, 2008: -- Pat Dye has been behind the wheel of a big yellow bus for 20 years... Dye said the students who ride bus No. 439 - those from Forestview High School and Cramerton Middle - behave well while on board, though fights do happen sometimes...Any fights that do occur on one of Gaston County Schools 215 regular school buses are caught on tape... Each school bus comes equipped with a small camera mounted inside the bus... The camera records to a VHS tape, which can be pulled to review footage and verify what happens on bus routes... (Photos by John Clark/The Gaston Gazette - Students board school buses at Forestview High School on a Thursday afternoon)