Thursday, 25 May 2006

Running for Bus, Door Shuts, Bus Drives Away.

Running for bus, door Shuts, bus drives away. If that hasn't happened to you then you probably never use buses. Or you study time tables carefully and get to the bus stop in plenty of time. Or you have been lucky so far. Here are a few incidents that happened to me to day and in 4 of the 5 cases it would have looked to the poor sod left at the bus stop that the driver was just being a bastard. In one case he really was a bastard.

First case I stopped at Jury's Corner and dropped of a passenger and loaded an other one, quick glance in near side mirror, no one running for bus. So look in off side mirror and right indicator on. Several cars went speeding past before the first of about four 38 tonne heavy goods vehicles flashed his lights to let me out. Just as I started to move some one came running up and banging his fist the side of the bus. The choice was simple. I could stop and force the HGV to either brake hard or swerve to avoid running into the back of the bus. What ever he did the other HGV s behind would have had to do the same. Or I could pull away and avoid the possibility of 132 tonnes of hgv s and their loads smashing in to me and the bus.

Next there was a woman 25 yards beyond a bus stop running towards the bus stop. The bus was 50 yards before the bus stop traveling at 35 mph (in a 40 mph road) with a clear view of the road several hundred yards ahead. Now in my experience people running towards a bus stop do not always want the bus, they may be out jogging or in a hurry some where or just running for the fun of it. But in this case there were several clues that suggested that she did want the bus. One, and I am being generous here in my use of adjective, she was slightly overweight. Slightly over weight people tend not to run unless they really need to. Especially when they are this slightly overweight. The second clue was that she was pushing a baby buggy. Slightly over weight women pushing baby buggies don't tend to run for the fun of it. And third, she had her arm out. In my experience slightly over weight women pushing baby buggies don't go jogging with their arm out stretched. Not unless they are slightly eccentric and want to instill a love of jogging into baby at an early age and have a broken shoulder that require a plaster cast that forces her arm out at right angles to the body. Not something you see every day. Not in Torquay anyway.

Did the bastard stop. Go on have a guess. I'll give you a clue, begins with n and ends with o.

The next two cases happened in Paignton Bus Station. Now in PBS we have a company rule that once you have started to reverse of the stop you don't stop and pick passengers up. Saves confusion. Now before I do start reversing I had to start the engine, close the doors, switch on headlights and hazard warning lights and engage reverse gear. Then look round and check it is safe to go and if it is release hand brake and go. In both the cases some one who had been chatting to a friend decided this moment was a good time to get on the bus. Wrong, not a good time to get on the bus and neither of them managed it. Plenty of time to continue chatting.

The last incident was the same as the first when a women with a dog arrived a second after a car had flashed his lights and I had started moving. I do look to see if any one is running up at the last minute but there does come a point where you have to stop looking and are "Committed to Go. So it Goes

The second incident I described wasn't me by the way. I would have stopped gently and without fuss and proceeded on my way happy in my work.


Anonymous said...

I'm clearly thick, because I know that to go from Paignton to Torquay I need a 12A.. but what do I take to go from Torquay to Paignton? Do I really have to go all the way around?

Anonymous said...

Between Torquay and Paignton in either direction you can catch either the 12 or the 12A. They both follow the same route. Between Paignton and Brixham in either direction catch the 12 as the 12A goes round the houses and the industrial estate and takes longer.

Captain said...

The law is clear. Once the doors are closed and your signal is on then you have left the stop irrispective of whether the bus has moved or not.

If the Taffic Commissioner sees you letting some one on after this he'll have you.

SaneScientist said...

Some people can be quite dense. When the bus leaves the stop that I get on, it has to nose out into the traffic and force its way (it's that kind of road I'm afraid). Despite the fact that the buses run every 3 minutes, and that the driver is blocking the traffic (and obviously busy looking out of his window), at least every other day, somebody hammers on the door and shouts obscenities when the driver ignores them and pulls off.

What exactly do they expect him to do? Just stop in the middle of the road and issue a ticket? And you just know they won't have the correct fare...