Thursday, September 30, 2010

'Next Stop' system means no more fines

By this point, most OC Transpo riders have probably had the chance to hear the Next Stop Announcement System on many of their buses--according to 580 CFRA, half of the fleet had the system installed as of this Monday. And although there have been some issues with the service--stops for wrong routes called out, or multiple stops called out at once--at least we can look forward to one thing (aside from knowing where the bus is, obviously): No more fines from the Canadian Transportation Authority.

The CTA had fined the City of Ottawa $5,000 in July 2009 and then another $12,500 in March 2010 for failing to call out the stops, determined by the tribunal to pose an undue obstacle to the visually impaired, among others. And although OC Transpo tried to have drivers call out stops, if just wasn't reliable enough: Some drivers were great about it, some less than enthusiastic, some refused to do it, and some were just too darn pre-occupied with driving a huge vehicle filled with people to worry about it. But now it's on.

My favourite stop so far? Alta Vista, because when translated into French it, for some reason, becomes Aulta Veesta.


Anonymous said...

I still wouldn't say we are out of the woods yet. The operators were calling about 80% of the stops when we got fined last time. Only half the fleet is carrying the system so far, and operators are still expected to call out stops on the rest. Unfortunately, I think fewer operators are calling out the stops on the buses without the system. Couple that with the errors - which is worse than not calling out the stops at all - and there is still time to get another fine before the complete implementation at the end of February, 2011.

WJM said...

On the flip side, for some reason known only to Julian Doucet, the French proper name Pagé, "in English", is pronounced p'Zhay.

Overall, the system is great, but they really need to re-examine the idea of duplicating proper-name announcements where there is no linguistic need to do so. On a crowded, noisy bus, it can actually cause confusion.