Average In Service Bus Count Up From 50 To 65

May 10, 2019 | 5 Comments

The Government is “committed to delivering a quality public bus service” and over the past year the average in service bus count has increased from 50 buses, up to 65 buses “through a combination of new bus purchases, mid-life refits and out of service repairs,” Minister of Tourism and Transport Zane DeSilva said in the House of Assembly today [May 10].

The Minister noted that the Department of Public Transportation [DPT] implemented a 50-bus schedule in March 2019 to “provide a reduced public bus service that could be reliably met with the available buses and no cancellations,” however the schedule was insufficient to meet demands and “there were challenges with the rest times between some trips, presenting health and safety concerns for bus operators.”

“As a result, it was decided to reinstate the previous schedule effective 29 April 2019,” the Minister said. “The decision to revert to the former schedule was not taken lightly, but was the only recourse to address the concerns of our operators and passengers.”

“Implementing the 2019 bus schedule was a learning curve, and is an advancement to build on as we move forward. The Ministry, Unions, and DPT have fostered stronger working relations, demonstrated in part by our ability to agree the definition of night work and collectively develop and implement work rosters.

The Minister continued, “This Government is committed to delivering a quality public bus service. As such, replenishing the bus fleet remains a priority for DPT.

“Over the past year the average in service bus count has increased from 50 buses, up to 65 buses. This was accomplished through a combination of new bus purchases, mid-life refits and out of service repairs. We have taken delivery of six new buses in the past year, with a further six buses arriving between June and September 2019.

“In addition to new buses, this Government is also committed to investing in the people and systems needed to enhance Bermuda’s public transportation system. We are in the process of recruiting for a variety of posts including vehicle technicians, operators and support staff.

The Minister’s full statement follows below:

Mr. Speaker, the Department of Public Transportation [DPT] implemented a new fifty-bus schedule on 18 March 2019 to provide a reduced public bus service that could be reliably met with the available buses and no cancellations.

However, the frequency and capacity of the new schedule was insufficient to meet the demands of our commuters, visitors and students. Additionally, there were challenges with the rest times between some trips, presenting health and safety concerns for bus operators and the traveling public. As a result, it was decided to reinstate the previous schedule effective 29 April 2019.

The 2019 bus schedule was closely monitored over a period of six weeks, consolidating feedback from bus operators and the public. The decision to revert to the former schedule was not taken lightly, but was the only recourse to address the concerns of our operators and passengers.

Mr. Speaker, implementing the 2019 bus schedule was a learning curve, and is an advancement to build on as we move forward. The Ministry, Unions, and DPT have fostered stronger working relations, demonstrated in part by our ability to agree the definition of night work and collectively develop and implement work rosters. Once implemented, we consulted on the performance of the new schedule and decisions were made in the best interest of the public and our employees.

Mr. Speaker, this Government is committed to delivering a quality public bus service. As such, replenishing the bus fleet remains a priority for DPT.

Over the past year the average in service bus count has increased from 50 buses, up to 65 buses. This was accomplished through a combination of new bus purchases, mid-life refits and out of service repairs. We have taken delivery of six new buses in the past year, with a further six buses arriving between June and September 2019.

In addition, DPT has recently concluded a Request for Information [RFI] for new buses, and is in the process of preparing a Request for Proposal [RFP].

We are taking this opportunity to review the bus market and available vehicle types that meet Bermuda’s needs, as well as international public transportation standards. This includes consideration for sustainability and the environment, appropriately sized buses, accessibility, onboard features, and total cost of ownership.

The information gathered during the RFI process is encouraging and we are confident that there are solutions that can replenish the bus fleet in a timely manner, and improve the bus service.

Mr. Speaker, in addition to new buses, this Government is also committed to investing in the people and systems needed to enhance Bermuda’s public transportation system. We are in the process of recruiting for a variety of posts including vehicle technicians, operators and support staff.

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

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Comments (5)

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  1. Joe Bloggs says:

    Unbelievable.

  2. Paul says:

    It is unbelievable!!!!!!!!!!!!and you know what is even more unbelievable…in the house of asses today.. Rolf commisiong had the nerve to say the derogatory remarks about the best Premier this Island will ever have…(Sir John Swan) and this comes from a former BANK ROBBER
    P.LP. GET RID OF THIS MAN.

  3. Mrs. Worker says:

    WOW after how many years to get a schedule route. Wasted money to go back to the original schedule. There was a great change for me with the new schedule. I liked it but am now back to original which can benefit some but not all. You go 1 step forward just to go right back to same position

  4. Question says:

    In other words “we took a couple of years to screw everything up, and it was such a disaster we’re putting it all back the way it was before.”

  5. vida Smith says:

    This is so sad,we have no old schedules for our hotel guest, we called to the bus terminal,to be told they don’t have any, is this 2019 or not.

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