Monday, January 9, 2012

A look at cancelled trips

As you are probably aware, reports bus trip cancellations, but not all of them are revealed to the public. So, keep in mind, this is only a sample of the full dataset. Since December 21, 2010,, the companion website to OC Transpo Alerts Twitter, has been collecting data on bus cancellations. Below, is the data up to December 22, 2011.

Most common cancelled routes:

The top three most cancelled routes are, not surprisingly, routes 95, 96, and 97, which consist of approximately one third of the cancellations. Route 95 alone comprises nearly a quarter of all cancellations and on average, about six of its trips are cancelled per day. Transitway routes have more cancelled trips than other type of route because they are far more frequent and bunch up more frequently too. Routes 12 and 118 receive their fare share of complaints of being late and at times, much too late to even bother starting its run in the reverse direction.

As expected, there are fewer cancellations on the weekends. Wednesdays and Thursdays seem to have more cancelled trips than any other day of the week last year.

Peak hours experience more cancellations than any other time of the day. After 9 am, the number of cancellations decrease (fewer buses on the road and less traffic), but after 11 am, the cancellations start to increase. The afternoon rush hour period seems to be the worst, especially at 4 pm.

January and February saw over 35 cancellations per day, on average, which is primarily due to heavy snow falls and snowstorms. In September, many routes were modified and customers needed some time to adjust to the new routes. Normally, in September, students return to school and people are returning from holidays. The combination of increased ridership, cut buses, and some confusion and enquiries over the new routes created some reliability problems.

OC Transpo reports about 27 cancellations per day on average, which is a very small fraction of all the runs in the system on a given day. Absent buses are due to bus breakdowns, chronic unreliability of the route, traffic jams, bus collisions, shortages in available buses and drivers, and similar events.

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