Real Time Information

Bus and Coach operations, new or changed services and timetables for First Midland Red Buses Limited or its predecessor, Midland Red West Limited.
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AdamH
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Location: Worcester

Real Time Information

Post by AdamH » 07:14 Tuesday 15th November 2016

While heading up the Bromyard Road this morning on the first 420 I noticed at least 4 shelters now have real time displays fitted. They look like they are working too.

TimBrown
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Location: Worcester

Re: Real Time Information

Post by TimBrown » 08:47 Tuesday 15th November 2016

AdamH wrote:
07:14 Tuesday 15th November 2016
While heading up the Bromyard Road this morning on the first 420 I noticed at least 4 shelters now have real time displays fitted. They look like they are working too.
The one at New Inn, Ombersley Road was working yesterday afternoon, but it has a digital note saying that the the system is still being tested. As my 37 was exactly on time there was no way of knowing if it would indicate that the bus was running late or by how many minutes.

When a bus is very late, or missing altogether as was the 14-10 37 from Crowngate yesterday, which therefore failed to make the 14-30 from New Inn into the City, it might defuse some of the anger if such displays gave a valid reason for the cancellation. I guess this won't happen with a County Council operation unless there is minute by minute contact with Firstbus at Crowngate and Diamond at Kidderminster in the case of 303.

That said, if a driver fails to turn up through sickness and nobody notices for half an hour then the C.C. display will be ignorant of the problem too. Who is monitoring the bus mounted GPS system I wonder, this ought to flash up a red warning if a bus is late, perhaps giving controllers enough time to remedy the situation in Crowngate at least?

DD12
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Re: Real Time Information

Post by DD12 » 16:17 Tuesday 15th November 2016

Thanks for the above post , Tim.
I'm very glad that someone other than myself is interested, and concerned about these aspects of bus services in Worcester.

I will continue to have plenty of opinions and things to "spout about" around all this, in the next year or two. - (But I am aware of the many of the problems that bus operators are up-against).

The advantage of doing-so on this website, is that we all have a bias in favour of FMR, and there are knowledgeable members who can correct our mistakes and enhance our understanding (s).

I'd like to "start" by saying that it's no use walking for 10 minutes, say,(sometimes a painful walk) to a bus stop that has got a real-time info display, only to find that the bus will be along in another 20 or 30 minutes, again and AGAIN ! -
I hope that the RT system will be able to tell people (at home, or in their workplace etc), - those of us who have old-style phones, - when the next bus from their stop will be, and for those who have smart phones, a "picture" of where their bus currently is.

As for the reason for it being late, I can envisage a message being PERMANENTLY set to "Delayed in Traffic", even when that is not the true, or not the main reason !
I HAD hoped that FIRST had reached the same opinion as me, that their services were not reliable enough - (ie when traffic conditions are reasonable or "normal"),
and that from the April re-casting of the Worcester network, we would all see and hear of an improvement.

Early indications are ( I fear), not too encouraging !

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AdamH
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Re: Real Time Information

Post by AdamH » 19:54 Tuesday 15th November 2016

Enquired about this tonight and was told that if the system can "see" the bus the ETA will be displayed, but if for some reason the bus isn't talking to the system the time shown in the timetable will be displayed.

I was also told that there are currently five vehicles in the fleet with faults and are therefore invisible. Our engineers are not permitted to work on them so we must wait for an engineer from the system operator to pay a visit.

On my return from Bromyard this morning I pulled up at one of the stops and the display showed 420 at the top but my eyesight couldn't quite make out my ETA from my cab. Hopefully, it said "NOW"!

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AdamH
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Re: Real Time Information

Post by AdamH » 21:44 Wednesday 16th November 2016

Spotted a couple of displays on the Service 38 route tonight.

TimBrown
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Location: Worcester

Re: Real Time Information

Post by TimBrown » 11:31 Wednesday 23rd November 2016

AdamH wrote:
21:44 Wednesday 16th November 2016
Spotted a couple of displays on the Service 38 route tonight.
I travelled in to the City centre this morning on the 37 from the New Inn, Ombersley Road and noted that the real time display system was telling me how long the wait for the next bus would be in minutes; it progressively reduced as the bus moved nearer to my stop. When it arrived the display was showing a two minute wait, so it wasn't that far out - at least potential passengers have a good idea now if their intended bus is running and whether to expect a delayed or on-time arrival.

Whilst en route I noted that the inbound bus shelters at Beckett Road and at the Co-op supermarket opposite Northwick Road junction with Ombersley Road are fitted with display units which should be up and running (though not verified personally).

There was also a fancy message page advising passengers that there would be possible delays during the Victorian Fayre from 24 to 27 November 2016; it also said there will be some additional services, which I presume to be the 'Park & Ride' from County Hall, are detailed on line.

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AdamH
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Re: Real Time Information

Post by AdamH » 11:47 Wednesday 23rd November 2016

I would have though the display should show "0 mins" or "Now" when your bus arrived. Anyone who arrived one minute later would be pleased to read they only have a short wait, yet in reality they have missed it.

Was the bus running two minutes early by chance? :lol:

TimBrown
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Location: Worcester

Re: Real Time Information

Post by TimBrown » 12:10 Wednesday 23rd November 2016

AdamH wrote:
11:47 Wednesday 23rd November 2016
I would have though the display should show "0 mins" or "Now" when your bus arrived. Anyone who arrived one minute later would be pleased to read they only have a short wait, yet in reality they have missed it.

Was the bus running two minutes early by chance? :lol:
No not at all, it was actually five minutes late arriving and had been showing progressively reducing 'lateness' as it travelled nearer the New Inn. When I arrived at the stop at 08-45 to catch the 08-57 it was showing an arrival time of say 27 minutes, two minutes later 24 minutes etc, so it was tracking the progress quite well. In the event the bus departed at 09-02 which wasn't too bad at all for just on the edge of morning peak period.

MattW
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Location: Welland

Re: Real Time Information

Post by MattW » 18:05 Wednesday 23rd November 2016

Seems pretty widespread down in First Kernow territory so shows it can be done.

DD12
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Re: Real Time Information

Post by DD12 » 23:43 Thursday 24th November 2016

There's a short report on Worcester News tonight about the RT displays.
Apparently the county council HOPES that the info will ONE DAY be available on Mobiles - (LOL !).
And .... "after this roll-out, we hope to have a strong enough case to improve the (system)".

My guess is that, - the bottom line in all this, is that the system will simply highlight that the next bus is due in 30 (+) minutes because it's delayed in the traffic, - and that the city and county councils have - through very bad management (long-term), made this a very difficult and expensive problem to solve,
ie - the same councillors and officials who are introducing the RT system will possibly have-to face-up to some of the realties, and make some difficult decisions regarding roads, traffic, bus priorities, etc. ( - or maybe they'll just quit !)

However, I'm grateful to those people who are slowly chipping-away at the task.

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