Updated: 01/07/2014 02:18

Commuters divided on Bus Service Reliability Framework

Commuters divided on Bus Service Reliability Framework

The government will pilot a carrot-and-stick approach to ensure buses arrive at their appointed times at bus stops. 

The pilot will be rolled out for 22 bus services next month. 

Commuters 938LIVE spoke to are divided on how the new scheme will work. 

The Bus Service Reliability Framework or BSRF will start in February with 15 SBS Transit and SMRT services. 

The two-year trial will subject both public transport operators to an incentive and penalty based system. 

An indicator known as the Excess Wait Time or EWT will be used to compare commuters' actual and scheduled waiting times. 

It scores buses against their baseline that's derived from each bus services' historical EWT performance. 

Operators will receive between $2,000 and $6,000 monthly for every 6-second improvement of their EWT score. 

On the other hand, they'll be fined between $1,300 and $4,000 if their EWT score worsens by 6 seconds. 

Many commuters 938LIVE spoke to welcomed the move. 

But others like Alfred Lau, says the fines could be stiffer. 

He takes Bus service 52 which runs between Bishan and Jurong East regularly, 

"I often have to wait really long for the bus, like in 20 minutes and sometimes they come together. Honestly I don't expect much because I think the fines are too little, they should fine abit more so that it actually hurts"

Another commuter Kwan Jin Peng, says buses who arrive earlier than scheduled is also a problem. 

He noticed this on service 858. 

"Because for commuters, what we want is reliability and be able to factor in the transport time more accurately. Let's say the bus say it'll come in five minutes and it comes early, it will not be good for us because we will miss the bus."

Nur Siti, a Woodlands resident who takes service 911 daily is worried that the carrot-and stick approached would lead to drivers speeding. 

"Because when they want to rush to the next stop, usually elderly take some time to sit down when they sit down and if the bus driver just drive off like that, sometimes it can cause elderly to be injured."

Public Transport Operators will be given four months to adjust. 

-By Fann Sim

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