Dubai Bus occupancy hits 41%, compares well with 25% in Sweden, 32% in Japan: Al Tayer

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Source:  www.zawya.com

The Roads & Transport Authority – Mohammed Al Munji: His Excellency Mattar Al Tayer, Chairman of the Board and Executive Director of the Roads & Transport Authority (RTA), revealed that seats occupancy in Dubai public buses clocked 41% last year compared with 40% in 2010.

Dubai buses
Dubai buses

“This rate is considered relatively high considering the lifetime of public transit systems in the Emirate as bus seats occupancy in countries that have long history in public transport systems is 25% in Sweden, 30% in Finland, 32% in Japan and goes higher to hit 45% in the UK, 55% in Belgium, and 58% in Austria, for instance,” commented Al Tayer.

“Public buses adherence to schedules soared from 17% in early 2008 to 77% in 2010 and went even higher to hit 80% in 2011, whereas this rate in countries like Singapore, which is one of the countries known for its high bus schedule adherence rate, is 83%. The geographical coverage of urban areas by public transport service kept moving upwards from 75% in 2011 to reach 80% in the first quarter of this year. The operational rate of bus fleet in the first quarter of this year recorded 92%, and adherence with preventive bus maintenance programs amounted to 97% whereas the targeted rate was 90%,” revealed Al Tayer.

“Initiatives rolled out by the RTA to upgrade the operational efficiency of the public bus fleet, augment revenues and rationalize expenditures have contributed to reducing the operational expenses in the first quarter of this year by as much as 16.29 million dirham, while revenues were hiked by 3.27 million dirham.

“The RTA has succeeded in posting high traffic safety rates in public bus operations as it managed to curb the number of accidents from 127 minor crashes in the first quarter of 2011 to about 90 minor crashes in the same period this year. This reduction is attributed to the huge attention paid by the RTA to training & qualifying bus drivers on coping with different road conditions, and the implementation of Offences & Fines Regulation to drivers flouting driving rules applicable in the UAE,” elaborated Al Tayer.

Technology

The Chairman of the Board and Executive Director reiterated RTA’s commitment to harness modern technology for serving mass transport commuters through improving the quality of services offered to passengers. In this regard the RTA developed the Journey Planner (Wojhati) which is accessible through RTA portal (www.rta.ae) or via 10 touch screens mounted in a number of main stations. Through these screens, passengers can plan their journeys on Dubai Metro, buses, water taxi or the water bus. The program familiarizes users with all schedules of mass transit modes and the user will have access to all public transport routes as well as the dedicated pedestrian pathways.

About 2050 electronic systems have been installed and operated on 683 buses over the past months of this year displaying the routes map, offering educative materials to the public, and informing passengers about the next stops, on the same lines used in the metro service. In the first quarter of this year, the number of users of Wojhati exceeded 123 thousand users, and the RTA installed 88 monitors to display real-time schedules of buses in various areas including the metro stations and some bus stops.

The RTA has also launched Awselni program to serve employees of other entities, and Sharekni program to lift users of similar journeys in one vehicle through subscription on the dedicated webpage of the program, and the total number of subscribers to the program reached 16 thousand persons in the first quarter of this year. The RTA has also upgraded its website to satisfy the needs of users and achieve higher customers satisfaction rating. More info