We refer to the letters on the Bus Service Reliability Framework (BSRF) in The Straits Times on 28 and 30 January 2014, and Today, 28 January 2014.
Bus bunching followed by long waiting time is a common feedback that the LTA received. The BSRF aims to address this by improving the regularity of buses and reducing instances of bus bunching. Improved reliability and regularity of bus services will ensure better spread of passengers on board at trip level. BSRF complements the Bus Service Enhancement Programme (BSEP) where buses are injected to reduce crowding and shorten waiting time.
Under BSRF, bus operators are given incentives if they are able to reduce commuters’ excess wait time (EWT). Similarly, they will be penalised if the EWT increases. However, the EWT is not measured in seconds for a single bus trip but all bus trips during the six-month assessment period. The average is then taken to derive the final EWT score before the incentive or penalty is imposed.
All BSRF buses will start with its own unique “baseline” EWT which is derived from the bus service’s past EWT performance. We have also set a buffer zone where operators will not be incentivised or penalised within a certain EWT range to account for traffic congestion or seasonal fluctuation.
The BSRF is not likely to encourage unsafe driving behaviour. Bus captains will be instructed by the service controllers to slow down, or even hold at bus stops when necessary, if the bus does not obstruct traffic and other buses. All buses, including those under the BSRF, are already required to adhere to speed limits on the roads. All buses are also installed with speed limiters that prevent them from going beyond 60km/h. Bus operators have Standard Operating Procedures on safe driving standards, and safe driving skills are continually reinforced.
Helen Lim (Ms)
Director, Media Relations
Land Transport Authority