• Passenger information survey

  • General discussion of passenger rail proposals and systems not otherwise covered in the specific forums in this category, including high speed rail.
General discussion of passenger rail proposals and systems not otherwise covered in the specific forums in this category, including high speed rail.

Moderators: mtuandrew, gprimr1

  by marc224
 
Hello, it's me, Marc.


I have a question and would appreciate if you could help me. I was told that you are the right people to contact. It is about the history of bus transportation in the USA
in the big cities (e.g. New York, Washington, Florida and so on), more specifically about bus stop announcements and displays.

I had a conversation with an acquaintance about bus stop announcements and displays in the 1980s and 1990s. Also, I will be writing a paper in class on this topic (public transit).


My first question is: How long have automatic bus stop announcements and displays been around?

Before there were automatic stop announcements and displays on the buses , did the bus drivers have to call out the stops into the microphone?

Did bus drivers really do that when they had to announce the stops themselves?

What was it like in your city?
Did most bus drivers always announce the stops without being asked?

.are there any of you bus drivers or other people who have ridden the bus a lot since that time (1970), but especially in the 1980/1990s, and know what it was like in reality or have experienced it yourselves?

I look forward to your reply

With kind regards

Marc
  by eolesen
 
Stops were never called out on the buses I rode in the 70s and 80s. You paid attention to what was happening outside, not being sucked into your phone screen....

Sent from my SM-G981U using Tapatalk

  by Red Wing
 
During my time as a transit bus driver in the late 90's early 2000's we were required to call out certain stops per ADA requirements. No microphone just my loud voice.
  by ExCon90
 
My recollection is that regardless of city it depended almost entirely on the individual driver. There were probably some regulations in effect in various cities, to be enforced -- or not -- by supervisors or managers. It was not uncommon for a passenger, on boarding, to ask the driver to "call [Elm St.] please," if unfamiliar with the route. I don't recall ever being on a city bus anywhere that had a microphone for the driver.
  by ExCon90
 
eolesen wrote: Fri Jan 14, 2022 4:18 pm You paid attention to what was happening outside, not being sucked into your phone screen....
True -- in those days heads were buried in newspapers (newspapers?), but people would at least glance up occasionally when turning a page.

I don't know whether this is relevant to your study, but bus stops were rarely if ever identified by signs identifying the stop by name. I grew up in North Jersey (Public Service Coordinated Transport territory), and when we moved to Southern California I was impressed by the wooden benches at bus stops bearing the name of a bank or other local business (the longer headways in the Los Angeles suburbs made benches almost a necessity). In many cities the existence of a bus stop was marked only by a white band on a nearby telephone pole, and displays identifying the routes which stopped there were rare to unknown.
  by wigwagfan
 
In Portland the first buses that were equipped with automatic stop announcements wasn't until around 1997. Prior to then stops were only announced on request, and many buses didn't have a working P.A. system so the driver would have to shout out the stop (or usually say it only loud enough to those in front of the bus). However it wasn't for another 10 years or so until most buses were ASA equipped.

On the MAX light rail system stops were manually announced by the Operator until about the same time when the Type 2 LRVs came into service for the Westside Light Rail line (now the Blue Line), and the Type 1 cars were retrofitted with audible announcements but not visual signs (the Type 1s were high level cars with steps to board, and thus weren't ADA compliant.)
  by marc224
 
Hi, thanks for your interesting messages.

I had thought that at least the main stops were hip in the 1970s /1980s.
Especially in the big cities there were also many strangers.
I know that in Germany, for example, the bus driver announced the stops.

I also heard that it was handled differently depending on the state and city.

I would be very happy to hear more news on this subject.
What city and decade was it in your experiences.

Did you used to have the bus driver announce the major stops without being asked in the (1970) ,1980 / 1990?
How high would you estimate the rate of bus drivers who always announced the stops without being asked?

Many greetings Marc
  by HenryAlan
 
marc224 wrote: Sun Jan 16, 2022 10:44 am Did you used to have the bus driver announce the major stops without being asked in the (1970) ,1980 / 1990?
How high would you estimate the rate of bus drivers who always announced the stops without being asked?
That's the way I remember it. They would announce stops if they were a transfer point, or some other significant landmark. Otherwise, you needed to ask them to announce a stop to be sure that they would call it out. As for when this changed, I'd say it was mid to late 90s that some systems moved to automated, all stop announcements, probably another decade before it was universal. Most of my bus riding experience from that era would be in Boston and Los Angeles.
  by STrRedWolf
 
marc224 wrote: Fri Jan 14, 2022 6:53 am My first question is: How long have automatic bus stop announcements and displays been around?

Before there were automatic stop announcements and displays on the buses , did the bus drivers have to call out the stops into the microphone?

Did bus drivers really do that when they had to announce the stops themselves?

What was it like in your city?
Did most bus drivers always announce the stops without being asked?

.are there any of you bus drivers or other people who have ridden the bus a lot since that time (1970), but especially in the 1980/1990s, and know what it was like in reality or have experienced it yourselves?
Might as well respond. My answers are going to be Baltimore-centric (local to Baltimore and MTA Maryland).

LED displays and audio on MTA Maryland buses started before 1997, if I remember correctly. They were on the (then) #14 Annapolis-Potapsco bus route. Most of the time they worked.

Before? Unknown and I don't have any old regulations on hand. I know there was one driver (they are called "bus operators" behind the scenes) where he would speak into a microphone and call out the stops. Unfortunately, while the bus would call them out itself in a clear voice, his voice was so gravely you could drive a bus on it. I believe he's retired now.

Most everyone here are rail enthusiasts or work in various bits of the rail industry. Only a few of us (me included) were in areas of transit... and I worked on the servers that kept MTA Maryland going!
  by ExCon90
 
Just a thought -- have you tried the Motor Bus Society (www.motorbussociety.org)? Their website indicates that for a donation they may undertake some research upon request.