Here's a question for you.
But first a little background information. The 12 and the 12A both travel from Newton Abbot to Brixham. They both follow the same route and use the same bus stops from Newton to Torquay and on to Paignton Bus Station. After Paignton they take different routes to Brixham. The 12 goes through Goodrington and Waterside, the direct route to Brixham. The 12A goes via the Zoo, Roselands estate and South Devon College before rejoining the 12 route at Windy Corner. The journey time to Brixham is 22 mins longer on the 12A. So if you want to get to Goodrington or Waterside you must take the 12. If you want the Zoo, Roselands or the college you must take the 12A.
However if you are getting of at Paignton or somewhere before Paignton then either the 12 or the 12A will take you to where you want to got. If you are going to Brixham you can get either, the 12 is much quicker and an easier ride, so most people in Newton, Torquay and Paignton who are going to Brixham will want to catch the 12. Even is it means waiting 7 or 8 mins for the 12, it is worth the wait. Personally I would not travel to Brixham on the 12A unless someone paid me (which of course they do).
O.K. Here is the question.
You are a 12 driver. you are traveling 100 yards behind a 12A which is stopping at the stop outside Torquay Library. There are 8 or 10 people waiting at the stop. You have no way of knowing if any of those people want to catch your bus, the number 12, or if they are all going to get on the 12A that is at the stop.
Do you accelerate up to a noticeable fraction of the speed of light so you can get past the 12A before some little old dear who wants to catch your bus to Waterside (12A don't do to Waterside, remember) can manage to get the 30 feet to the back of the 12A and put her hand out for you to stop?
The correct answer is of course YES.
Surprised by that answer. I hope so. But read the question again. It asked what do you do. Well O.K. You might not do that. YOU might slow down, pull in to the left and watch the people at the bus stop carefully to see if any of them are interested in catching your bus. Unfortunately there are a large number of our drivers who don't.
Now you might think I am having a go at them, well you would be right. But when I think back to the introduction of the 12A seven months ago I can not remember receiving any training or instruction on this matter from the company training officer. Perhaps now would be the time we did.