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Bus reliability study: Early signs ‘encouraging’, says LTA

Another seven bus services will join the two-year trial, bringing the total number of participating bus services to 22.

SINGAPORE: A two-year scheme to improve bus reliability has seen “encouraging” results in the first three months since its launch, with fewer instances of prolonged waiting times and "bus bunching" - having multiple buses arriving at the same time - the Land Transport Authority (LTA) said on Monday (June 16).

The Bus Service Reliability Framework, launched in February, assesses the regularity of a bus service using the concept of Excess Wait Time (EWT) – the difference between actual and scheduled wait times.

The trial was started with seven SMRT buses, with four trunk bus services seeing improvements in their EWT compared to the 2013 baseline score, LTA said. The performance of the three feeder bus services in the trial were mixed.

Eight SBS Transit bus services, which joined the BSRF trial in March and April, also saw improvements across the board, LTA said.

Mr Yeo Teck Guan, LTA’s Group Director for Public Transport said, “The results of the BSRF trial are encouraging considering the buses have only been placed on the trial for a very short period. This is a significant change to bus operations, and an important step in improving commuters’ travel experience.”

Monetary incentives and penalties are in place to get public bus operators to ensure that their buses arrive on time, with operators standing to gain up to S$6,000 for every 0.1 minute reduced from previously recorded waiting times. For each 0.1-minute deviation from their scheduled arrivals at the bus stop, they will be fined up to S$4,000. The incentives and penalties will apply only from June, to give the operators time to adapt.

Another seven bus services – SBS Transit Services 51, 154, 292, and 354, as well as SMRT Services 189, 853 and 962 – will join the trial from June 23. This brings the total number of participating bus services to 22 in the two-year trial, LTA said.

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