|A common complaint among bus commuters is overcrowding – especially during peak hours. In fact, SBS Transit received an average of 2.3 complaints every day from commuters who failed to get on board the bus.
But it is not always a case of insufficient capacity. Investigations based on records generated by the bus system on board as well as some public feedback have shown that commuters are sometimes responsible for this situation too – they don’t move to the rear, preferring instead to cram themselves at the front of the bus.
Very often, it is noticed that the front part of the bus is crowded with commuters when there is still space at the rear. This has caused difficulties for commuters at the bus stop to board the bus and sometimes this can result in them being late for their appointments, as they have to wait for the next bus. This prolongs the time spent by the bus at the bus stops which extends the traveling time of the journey for all passengers on board.
In a move to address this situation, SBS Transit today launched a ‘Move To The Rear’ bus campaign. Land Transport Authority Chief Executive BG (NS) Yam Ah Mee, said at the launch: “Today’s event is very timely since as you know, Singapore is working to make public transport a choice mode. Today is an ideal time not only to encourage our fellow commuters to ‘move to the rear of the bus’ for the sake of getting more people on the bus. Today is an ideal time to encourage our fellow commuters to consider all of things happening to make public transport a desirable choice for everyone.
“Sometimes our interactions with passengers have a bigger effect on how we feel about a trip, than the trip itself. Perhaps an effort like this will help us to remind ourselves of what we need to do,” BG (NS) Yam added.
During the campaign, buses will play a public announcement message encouraging commuters to move to the rear to avoid unnecessary delays. Mr Joe Augustine, a well-known radio personality is the voice behind the English message while Ms Ling Zhi, a popular radio DJ is the Mandarin voice talent.
Three services, namely Services 15, 27 and 36, have been selected to roll out this campaign first. Services 15 and 36, which have a combined fleet of 28 buses, have already been fitted with a PA system while Service 27, with 28 buses, will be fitted in March.
“I suppose most people don’t realise that by not moving to the rear, they can delay a bus trip or deprive other fellow passengers from getting on board. That’s certainly not considerate. We hope that with this campaign, they will come to realize that by moving to the rear, they too will benefit by making way for others to board. If feedback from the three services are favourable, we will introduce this PA system across our entire fleet of 2,800 buses,” said Mr Ong Boon Leong, Executive Director, SBS Transit.
From Pasir Ris Bus Interchange to Marine Parade Rd, via Tampines, Bedok Reservoir Road, Kaki Bukit, Jalan Eunos, Still Road, Joo Chiat Place, Telok Kurau Road and Marine Parade Road (loop).
From Hougang Central Bus Interchange to Changi Airport Terminal, via Sengkang Central and Tampines Avenue 4, 5, 7, 9 and 10.
From Changi Airport Terminal to Tomlinson Road, via ECP, Marine Parade Road, Amber Road, Mountbatten Road, Temasek Blvd, Raffles Ave, Stamford Road, Orchard Road, Penang Road, Somerset Road, Grange Road, and Tomlinson Road (loop).