11 November 2008

Odds and grumpy old sod

The work to replace all the bus stop shelters has now started at Derriford Hospital, so expect chaos there for a week or two! I dont know how well (or how badly) its going yet as for the last two evenings I have had to make visits down to Mutley after work so have managed to avoid Derriford in the evening rush so far this week. I did notice that when we were waiting to catch our bus from Derriford Roundabout several buses were showing as 'delay' on the RTP display, although our own 86 was only a few mins later than timetabled. The chaos should be a small price to pay for long overdue improvements!

The two visits down to Mutley highlighted a major problem when trying to catch a bus from a busy bus stop in the dark. I was waiting for the 47 which on both evenings was running about 20 mins late, which was clearly a traffic issue. The trouble is when two or three buses arrive at the bus stop at the same time you need to be on your guard to be able to get out in the road and stop the bus you want from driving passed. For many of the older Citybus Darts (and some of the First Darts too) it is almost impossible to read the destination display until the bus is practically right at the bus stop. The newer buses have much brighter displays, and First have been fitting these bright displays of many of their older buses. The step entrance Darts with the old fashioned blinds are very clear too. It does show just how much improved recently displays are - you can see them miles away!

The new Enviros for Citybus do seem to be having a few odd display issues too with at least one not display any route number on the front at all both evenings (139 I think from memory). Derriford Hospital may be chaotic and extremely busy but it is well lit and the buses go past so slowly - and all of them do stop, so you dont get the same issues with unreadable displays.
I am having similar problems with the Taxibuses when its raining I have a bit of shelter but its back a bit off the main footpath. The trouble is, if I am under the shelter I cant see the taxibuses coming until its too late to get out and hail them!
Its a good job I actually enjoy the ride once I get on my bus!


  1. Yeah, Citybus seem to be having quite a number of LED signboard issues lately. A few weeks back 73 lost most of the right-hand side of its front signboard. The new Enviros also seem to be having problems particularly with the multi-colour section of the board, as you mentioned. I've seen a number of number-less busses running as the colour display has failed on the front or the side. Manufacturing issue maybe? Though Citybus don't seem to be making much use of the colour palette available to them :)

    Still, at least they're (eventually) repairing them. Why does First seem to take the logic of "We'll black the window out and forget about it" on their ex-Hong Kong darts.

  2. "Why does First seem to take the logic of "We'll black the window out and forget about it" on their ex-Hong Kong darts"

    It's all down to cost I suppose. When the front display got changed to LED, First must have decided it wasn't cost effective to also splash out on new side and rear display for what are, middle aged buses.

    It may seem a bit tight, but when you think how many ex-Hong Kong Darts FDC operate, the costs will quickly mount up..

  3. some of the side number displays are removed and put in the varios i beleive so you get a partial digital display on the front


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