Overcrowded buses an accident waiting to happen
Many of Sydney’s buses are overloaded in peak times and more services combined with stronger regulations are urgently needed, the Rail Tram and Bus Union said today.
RTBU Bus and Tram Division Secretary Chris Preston said the problem needed to be addressed before a serious accident occurred.
“On some routes, buses are routinely so full it would be impossible to squeeze even one more person through the door,” said Mr Preston.
“Overcrowded buses are not only uncomfortable for commuters, but also put their safety at risk.
“All it would take would be for the driver to brake suddenly to avoid an accident and the passengers standing at the front could be flung through the windscreen.
“It’s also dangerous when passengers are standing too close to the rear doors because they could get caught and dragged along the road.”
“We urgently need more buses on these routes for the safety and comfort of our commuters.”
Mr Preston said that State Transit Authority buses used to display stickers that stated a limit of 15 standing passengers, but that these had been removed.
“We’re concerned that the NSW Government prefers to have commuters packed in like sardines rather than invest in providing an adequate number of services.
“Since the 15 standing limit stickers were taken down the driver no longer has any power to stop people climbing aboard an already full bus.
“At the end of a day when an incident occurs it’s the driver who will have to live with the consequences.
“With no guidelines visible it’s near impossible for drivers to limit how many people board the bus.
“Passengers understandably don’t want to wait for the next service which is often late or so overcrowded that it doesn’t even stop to pick them up.
“A combination of more services as well as an enforced legal limit of 15 standing passengers is urgently needed before an accident occurs.”